Family Monarch-flycatchers (Monarchidae)


Celestial Monarch (Hypothymis coelestis)


French: Tchitrec céleste German: Himmelsmonarch Spanish: Monarca celeste

Hypothymis coelestis


, 1877,

Dinagat, Philippines


Racial identity of Tawitawi population uncertain; tentatively included in nominate. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • H. c. coelestis Tweeddale, 1877 – Philippines: Luzon, Samar, Dinagat, Mindanao and Tawitawi; possibly extinct on Basilan.
  • H. c. rabori Rand, 1970 – Sibuyan, formerly also Negros, in C Philippines. Possibly extinct.
  • Descriptive notes

    15–16 cm; 13·6 g. Distinctive. Male has bright cerulean-blue head, and crest of long (some more than 40 mm) slender feathers (crest nearly always flat, raised... read more


    Call a loud, ringing 3-note whistle, “pwee pwee pwee”, each series c. 1 second in... read more


    Inhabits canopy and middle storeys of lowland forest, forest edge and secondary growth; to 750 m,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Almost unknown. Presumably sallies after flying insects. Observed singly or in pairs, mostly in mixed-species feeding flocks; one such... read more


    A pair and single fledgling observed in May in Luzon; male in immature plumage in Dec on Negros; males in reproductive condition (enlarged... read more


    No evidence of movements; local migration (to riverine forest) conceivable in areas with a marked... read more

    Status and conservation

    VULNERABLE. Restricted-range species: present in Luzon EBA, Negros and Panay EBA, Mindanao and the Eastern Visayas EBA and Sulu Archipelago EBA; also in Tablas, Romblon and... read more

    Recommended citation

    Moeliker, K. (2017). Celestial Monarch (Hypothymis coelestis). 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 17 November 2017).