Family White-eyes and Yuhinas (Zosteropidae)

Least Concern

Mauritius Grey White-eye (Zosterops mauritianus)


French: Zostérops gris German: Mauritius-Graubrillenvogel Spanish: Anteojitos gris de Mauricio

Motacilla mauritiana

J. F. Gmelin

, 1789,



Until recently considered conspecific with Z. borbonicus, but differs genetically#R and (setting aside brown and grey morphs of latter) by its pale grey vs pale brown upperparts (3); much whiter central underparts (2); much paler, vaguely rufous-tinged vs strong rufous-brown flanks (2); and much lower-pitched, less squeaky vocalizations (3)#R. Monotypic.



Descriptive notes

10·7–11·4 cm; male 7·5–10 g, female 7·5–11 g. Distinctive white-eye with whitish rump, no eyering; characteristically cocks the tail. Adult has forehead and upperparts grey... read more


Song a whistled warbling, usually preceded by sequences of contact calls and sometimes including... read more


The most catholic bird in its habitat choice on Mauritius, with exception of introduced Red-... read more

Food and feeding

Primarily nectar and insects, but only occasionally fruits (details unknown). Insects include especially Hemiptera (Flatopsis nivea... read more


Season Sept–Mar, peak Oct–Dec, and single records of nests (without eggs) in Jun and Jul, and another of fledged young seen in late Aug.... read more


Resident and considered to be highly sedentary.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Restricted-range species: present in Mauritius EBA. Most common and conspicuous white-eye on Mauritius, locally reaching densities of... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Mauritius Grey White-eye (Zosterops mauritianus). 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 28 January 2020).