Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Greyish Mourner (Rhytipterna simplex)


French: Tyran grisâtre German: Grauschmucktyrann Spanish: Plañidera gris

M[uscicapa]. simplex

M. H. C. Lichtenstein

, 1823,

Bahia, Brazil


Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • R. s. frederici (Bangs & T. E. Penard, 1918) – SE Colombia (S from Meta and Vaupés), E & S Venezuela and the Guianas S to E Ecuador, E Peru, Amazonian Brazil (S to Mato Grosso, N Goiás and N Maranhão) and N Bolivia (S to La Paz, Cochabamba and N Santa Cruz).
  • R. s. simplex (M. H. C. Lichtenstein, 1823) – E Brazil from Alagoas S to E Minas Gerais and SW São Paulo.
  • Descriptive notes

    19·5–20·5 cm; 33–38 g. Has plain grey head and upperparts, suggestion of crest on rear crown; wings and tail tinged brownish; underparts slightly paler, light... read more


    Loud, fast “r-t-t-t-t-t-t-tchew”, sometimes repeated several times in succession or given with 2... read more


    Inhabits middle and upper strata of terra firme humid forest, occasionally in transitional... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds on large insects, also some fruit. Analysis of 19 prey items taken from stomachs in SE Peru, included: Homptera (cicadas 32%);... read more


    Male in breeding condition in Aug in Colombia; enlarged gonads Aug–Nov in SE Peru. No other information.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to locally fairly common. Given that much of its habitat remains in relatively pristine condition within its large range, it is not likely... read more

    Recommended citation

    Scholes, E. (2020). Greyish Mourner (Rhytipterna simplex). 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 January 2020).