Family Cisticolas and allies (Cisticolidae)

Least Concern

Buff-throated Apalis (Apalis rufogularis)


French: Apalis à gorge rousse German: Weißbauch-Feinsänger Spanish: Apalis gorjirrufo

Drymoica rufogularis


, 1843,

Malabo, Bioko


See A. argentea. Taxonomy confused by considerable variation in plumage, but on available evidence not matched by differences in voice; taxonomic status of apparently isolated Angolan populations (angolensis and brauni) uncertain. Six subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. r. sanderi Serle, 1951 – S Benin and C & SW Nigeria (Jos Plateau and coastal forest E to R Niger).
  • A. r. rufogularis (Fraser, 1843) – Black-breasted Apalis – E Nigeria E to Central African Republic, S to Gabon and Congo; also Bioko.
  • A. r. angolensis (Bannerman, 1922) – Angola Apalis – NW Angola.
  • A. r. brauni Stresemann, 1934 – W Angola.
  • A. r. nigrescens (F. J. Jackson, 1906) – Buff-throated Apalis – DRCongo, SW South Sudan, Uganda (except SW), W Kenya, NW Tanzania and NW Zambia.
  • A. r. kigezi Keith et al., 1967 – Kigezi, in SW Uganda.
  • Descriptive notes

    12 cm; 6–11 g. A small, short-tailed forest apalis with marked regional variation in male plumage. Male nominate race has head, throat, breast and entire upperparts... read more


    Male song a series of up to 30 harsh dry “chirrip” or “trreee” notes,... read more


    Confined to Guinea-Congo forests biome; occurs in canopy and subcanopy of tall forest. Mainly in... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet mainly insects and other invertebrates, including small beetles (Coleoptera), bugs (Hemiptera), mantids (Mantodea), ants (Hymenoptera... read more


    Little known. Season Dec–Feb in Cameroon, Feb–Jul in Gabon, Feb–Oct in Angola, Jul–Aug in Zambia, and Feb–Aug... read more


    Presumably mostly resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to locally common. Occurs at densities of 0·06–0·08 pairs/ha in Gabon.

    Recommended citation

    Ryan, P. (2020). Buff-throated Apalis (Apalis rufogularis). 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).