Family Cisticolas and allies (Cisticolidae)

Least Concern

Chirinda Apalis (Apalis chirindensis)


French: Apalis de Chirinda German: Chirindafeinsänger Spanish: Apalis del Chirinda

Apalis chirindensis


, 1906,

Chirinda Forest, east Zimbabwe


Racial identity of recently recorded N Mozambique (Mt Chiperone) population uncertain, tentatively included in nominate race; study required. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. c. vumbae Roberts, 1936 – E highlands of Zimbabwe (Nyanga S to Bvumba).
  • A. c. chirindensis Shelley, 1906 – E highlands of Zimbabwe (S of Bvumba) and adjacent Mozambique, including Mt Gorongosa and Mt Chiperone.
  • Descriptive notes

    11–13 cm; 7–11 g. A rather nondescript grey apalis of forest canopy, with long and graduated tail; lacks sharp contrast between upperparts and underparts,... read more


    Male song a loud, strident series of evenly spaced “swik” notes, repeated monotonously up to 200... read more


    Middle-altitude and montane forest at up to 2200 m, mostly above 1200 m, but occasionally moving to... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet mainly insects, including small beetles (Coleoptera), caterpillars (Lepidoptera) and flies (Diptera). Occurs in pairs or small family... read more


    Breeds Oct–Feb, mainly Nov–Dec. Probably monogamous; solitary, territorial throughout year. Nest dome-shaped, with side... read more


    Mainly sedentary, but some movement to lower altitudes in winter.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Restricted-range species: present in Eastern Zimbabwe Mountains EBA. Locally common. Recently discovered at 1200 m on Mt Chiperoni, in N Mozambique,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Ryan, P. (2020). Chirinda Apalis (Apalis chirindensis). 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 25 February 2020).