Family Old World Flycatchers and Chats (Muscicapidae)

Least Concern

Buff-breasted Wheatear (Oenanthe bottae)


French: Traquet de Botta German: Ockerbrust-Steinschmätzer Spanish: Collalba de Botta
Other common names: Red-breasted Wheatear

Campicola bottæ


, 1854,

no locality = Yemen


Sometimes considered conspecific with O. isabellina, and commonly treated as conspecific with O. heuglinii but geographical break between them abrupt, and they differ in plumage and particularly in size, as well as in habitat and, reputedly, behaviour. Hitherto treated as conspecific with O. frenata. Monotypic.


Highlands of SW Saudi Arabia (S of Taif) and W Yemen (S to N Aden and E to Al-Bayda).

Descriptive notes

14–16 cm. Resembles O. isabellina, but with slightly shorter legs, sooty-smudged greyish-brown forecrown to mid-crown shading to paler brown-grey mantle and... read more


Song, often in low flight, a series of phrases consisting of fluty and hard scratchy notes. Calls... read more


Nominate race found on open hillsides with sparse vegetation, cultivated terraces in high plateaux... read more

Food and feeding

No information on food. Typically, forages by investigating ground in methodical search.


Feb–Jun in Ethiopia; food-carrying adults Apr–Jul in SW Arabian Peninsula. Nest placed under boulder or in earth bank, stone... read more


Apparently sedentary; possibly some post-breeding descent from highest elevations.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Nominate race often common. Race frenata uncommon in Eritrea and S Ethiopia, but locally common to abundant in W, C & SE... read more

Recommended citation

Collar, N. (2019). Buff-breasted Wheatear (Oenanthe bottae). 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 16 February 2019).