Family Monarch-flycatchers (Monarchidae)

Least Concern

Black-faced Monarch (Monarcha melanopsis)


French: Monarque à face noire German: Maskenmonarch Spanish: Monarca carinegro

Muscicapa melanopsis


, 1818,

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia


Has been considered conspecific with M. frater. Birds from far N of breeding range (Cape York region S to Caldwell, in N Queensland) sometimes separated as race pallidus, but appear indistinguishable from birds elsewhere in range. Monotypic.


E Australia; non-breeding SE New Guinea, D’Entrecasteaux Archipelago, Trobriand Is and Louisiade Archipelago, and NE Australia (E Cape York Peninsula).

Descriptive notes

16·5–19 cm; 21–29 g. A medium-sized to large, sluggish pale grey flycatcher with rufous underparts. Has black forehead and lores (not reaching to eye),... read more


Song a series of pleasant whistling notes, second note lower than first, followed by long ascending... read more


Lowland tropical and subtropical rainforest, gallery forest, eucalypt (Eucalyptus)... read more

Food and feeding

Food items mostly spiders (Araneae), beetles (Coleoptera), flies (Diptera), bugs (Hemiptera), including cicadids and cicadellids, also... read more


Season Oct–Mar. Territorial. Nest built by female, conical or cup-shaped, mostly of green moss, bark strips, grass, casuarina (... read more


Resident and partial migrant. Breeding visitor in SE Australia from mid-Aug/late Sept to early Apr... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common or fairly common; uncommon in SE Australia. Density of wintering population at New Guinea study site estimated at 2 birds/10 ha and in... read more

Recommended citation

Clement, P. (2018). Black-faced Monarch (Monarcha melanopsis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 12 December 2018).