Family Batises and Wattle-eyes (Platysteiridae)

Least Concern

East Coast Batis (Batis soror)


French: Pririt pâle German: Kinnfleckschnäpper Spanish: Batis pálido
Other common names: Pale Batis

Batis puella soror


, 1903,

Songea, southern Tanzania


Formerly regarded as a race of B. molitor, which it replaces geographically in E African lowlands (although apparently some range overlap in SE Tanzania). Proposed races littoralis (Zanzibar) and pallidigula (Mozambique) considered untenable. Monotypic.


Coastal Kenya, E & SE Tanzania (including Zanzibar I and Mafia I), Mozambique (S to S of R Save), SE Malawi, and eastward-facing slopes of mountains in E Zimbabwe.

Descriptive notes

10·5–11·5 cm; 8–13·1 g. Small flycatcher-like and shrike-like bird with contrasting black, grey and white (and some rufous) colours. Male has grey crown, darker... read more


Long piping 3-note “pook pook pook” delivered mournfully, repeated at constant rate up to 12 times... read more


Woodland in coastal lowlands, but on Zanzibar inhabits bushland and open cultivated country. Also,... read more

Food and feeding

Diet insects. Forages mostly in middle levels or canopy, by flycatching or hover-gleaning.


Season varies with region: Jan, Mar and May in E Africa, Aug–Jan on Zanzibar, Sept–Oct in Malawi, and mostly Oct–Jan in S... read more


Resident. Some seasonal altitudinal movement suspected in E Zimbabwe.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally common. Fairly common in Kenyan part of range, including Arabuko-Sokoke Forest Reserve. Fairly common on Zanzibar and in S... read more

Recommended citation

Louette, M. (2020). East Coast Batis (Batis soror). 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 29 February 2020).