Family Waxbills (Estrildidae)

Least Concern

Black-rumped Waxbill (Estrilda troglodytes)


French: Astrild cendré German: Grauastrild Spanish: Estrilda culinegra

F[ringilla]. Troglodytes

M. H. C. Lichtenstein

, 1823,



See E. rufibarba. Monotypic.


S Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia and Guinea E to S Sudan, W Eritrea and W Ethiopia, and S to NE DRCongo, Uganda and SW Kenya; recent records from N Tanzania#R. Introduced in Caribbean (Puerto Rico, Guadeloupe, Martinique), Hawaiian Is, Japan and Spain.

Descriptive notes

10 cm; 6·9-8·2 g. Male has lores and eyestripe to above ear-coverts red; forehead to back light grey-brown, back finely barred dark grey, rump and uppertail-... read more


Calls include harsh "chuur", "chew-tch-tch", nasal downslurred "jeeeu... read more


Grassy woodlands, dense woods and thickets, bases of inselbergs, dry grassland, abandoned... read more

Food and feeding

Seeds of grasses and herbs; also small insects, including termites (Isop­tera). Takes seeds from fruiting head while perched on a grass... read more


Season Jul–Dec in Senegal and Gambia, recently fledged young in Oct in Togo, laying in Jul and Aug in Nigeria, Jun–Jul in Sudan... read more


Resident. Possibly a wet-season breeding visitor in Ghana coastal thicket in Mar–Nov and in... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally common to uncommon. Very patchily distributed in W of range, where generally not common, but very common in some places, e.g. parts of Gambia... read more

Recommended citation

Payne, R. (2020). Black-rumped Waxbill (Estrilda troglodytes). 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 25 February 2020).