Family Cisticolas and allies (Cisticolidae)

Least Concern

Pale Prinia (Prinia somalica)


French: Prinia pâle German: Somaliprinie Spanish: Prinia somalí

Burnesia somalica


, 1897,

Las Durban, Somalia


See P. inornata. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. s. somalica (Elliot, 1897) – N Somalia.
  • P. s. erlangeri Reichenow, 1905 – SE South Sudan, C & S Ethiopia, C & S Somalia, Kenya and extreme NE Uganda; possibly N Tanzania#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    11–12 cm; 7–8 g. A pallid prinia lacking seasonal plumage changes. Nominate race has broad whitish supercilium, fading into greyish nape behind eye; lores grey-... read more


    Song a series of dry, buzzy, insect-like notes, “dzik dzik dzik…” or “zher-zher-zher-zher…”,... read more


    Confined to Somali-Masai biome; occurs in thorny scrub in semi-desert and arid savannas, favouring... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet mainly insects. Occurs singly, in pairs or in family parties. Forages by gleaning; creeps through tangled vegetation, and searches... read more


    Breeds Nov–May. Probably monogamous; solitary, territorial. Nest an upright oval with side entrance at top, woven from fine grass... read more


    Little known; presumably mostly resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common.

    Recommended citation

    Ryan, P. (2019). Pale Prinia (Prinia somalica). 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 19 September 2019).