Family Old World Flycatchers and Chats (Muscicapidae)

Least Concern

Blue-shouldered Robin-chat (Cossypha cyanocampter)


French: Cossyphe à ailes bleues German: Blauschulterrötel Spanish: Cosifa aliazul

B[essonornis]. cyanocampter


, 1850,

“Patria ignota” = Dabokrom, Ghana


Proposed race pallidiventris (described from Nandi, SW Kenya), based on paler underparts, synonymized with bartteloti. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. c. cyanocampter (Bonaparte, 1850) – E Guinea and Sierra Leone E to S Togo, S Nigeria, S Cameroon and SW & NE Central African Republic S to Gabon and N Congo.
  • C. c. bartteloti Shelley, 1890 – NE DRCongo and S South Sudan S to E & S Uganda, W Kenya and extreme NW Tanzania (Minziro Forest).
  • Descriptive notes

    15–16 cm; 28–32 g. Nominate race has blackish head with long white supercilium, dark olive-brown mantle and neck side to lower back, slightly browner wings with... read more


    Song, mainly during rainy season (can continue after nightfall), a sweet, rich mix of leisurely... read more


    Undergrowth of primary forest, especially dense edge growth and along streams, also tangled... read more

    Food and feeding

    Invertebrates, including ants, termites, beetles, caterpillars, moths, cicadas, grasshoppers, bugs, spiders and millipedes; fruit... read more


    Recorded in every month across range, with apparent peaks in Mar–Aug; breeding condition Aug–Sept in Liberia and May in Nigeria... read more


    Sedentary; some movement assumed, as individual in Gabon reported imitating Luscinia... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally frequent to locally common. Density 7–8 pairs/km² in secondary forest in Gabon. Fairly common at low elevations... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. (2020). Blue-shouldered Robin-chat (Cossypha cyanocampter). 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 28 February 2020).