Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Caatinga Black-tyrant (Knipolegus franciscanus)


French: Ada du Sao Francisco German: São-Francisco-Dunkeltyrann Spanish: Viudita de caatinga

Knipolegus aterrimus franciscanus

E. Snethlage

, 1928,

Lapa do Bom Jesus, Rio São Francisco, Bahia, Brazil


Long treated as a race of K. aterrimus, even recently, despite contrary evidence#R, but now found to belong in a distant clade#R. Differs from K. aterrimus in its red vs dark brown iris (3); shorter bill (on published data#R male effect size vs next closest taxon, K. a. aterrimus, −2.9, score 2) and tarsus, although wing and tail of similar lengths; in male, silvery-black vs pale bluish bill (2); in female, heavy dark streaking vs, at most, light streaking on breast (ns[2]), and tail almost all-black (narrow white outer margins) vs black and cinnamon (3). Monotypic.


CE Brazil, from São Francisco Valley in SW Bahia and N & C Minas Gerais W to SE Tocantins (Serra Geral), NE Goiás and Distrito Federal.

Descriptive notes

16·5 cm; 20·5 g (one female). Male is shiny black with a very broad white band at base of primaries (only conspicuous in flight), iris red, bill blackish or slightly paler... read more


Nothing published. The only available recording (context unknown) suggests that male gives very... read more


Arboreal caatinga and well-preserved semi-deciduous dry forest, nearly always associated... read more

Food and feeding

Diet presumably insects, but almost nothing known. Behaviour generally rather unobtrusive, perching quietly from canopy of trees down to... read more


Apparently nothing known.


Resident, although seasonal movements to forest areas not associated with limestone outcrops have... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Previously listed as Near Threatened. Generally rather uncommon and local (being known from rather few localities, c. 25), although... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Caatinga Black-tyrant (Knipolegus franciscanus). 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 11 December 2019).