Family Cisticolas and allies (Cisticolidae)

Least Concern

Black-faced Rufous-warbler (Bathmocercus rufus)


French: Bathmocerque à face noire German: Graubauch-Fuchssänger Spanish: Prinia carinegra

Bathmocercus rufus


, 1895,

Yaoundé, Cameroon


Sometimes treated as conspecific with B. cerviniventris. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • B. r. rufus Reichenow, 1895 – S Cameroon S to C & SE Gabon, E to SW Central African Republic, N Congo and extreme NW DRCongo.
  • B. r. vulpinus Reichenow, 1895 – NE & E DRCongo, S South Sudan, Uganda, W Kenya and NW Tanzania.
  • Descriptive notes

    12–13 cm; 15–20 g. A stocky, short-winged warbler with graduated tail of ten feathers. Male nominate race has forehead, forecrown, face, chin and throat black,... read more


    Song a series of loud, penetrating, prolonged notes on one pitch, “eeeenh eeeenh eeeenh... read more


    Dense undergrowth and herbaceous vegetation with vines, bracken, sedges and young trees, in damp... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet mainly small insects, including beetles (Coleoptera), caterpillars (Lepidoptera), ants and their eggs (Hymenoptera); also millipedes (... read more


    Mar–Jul and Dec–Jan. Probably monogamous; solitary, territorial. Nest a bulky, ball-shaped structure with side entrance, made... read more


    Little known; presumably resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common in its fragmented range. Density of 3·1 birds/ha in Kakamega Forest, in Kenya. Tolerates some degree of disturbance; occurs at... read more

    Recommended citation

    Pearson, D. (2019). Black-faced Rufous-warbler (Bathmocercus rufus). 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 19 September 2019).