Family Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae)

Least Concern

Pale-throated Greenbul (Atimastillas flavigula)


French: Bulbul d’Angola German: Blasskehlbülbül Spanish: Bulbul gorjiclaro

Trichophorus flavigula


, 1880,



Previously considered conspecific with A. flavicollis, but recognition as species made in molecular study#R without supporting evidence. Differs in its pale yellowish-white (nominate) to whitish (soror) vs bold yellow chin and throat (3); pale grey-tinged olive-green vs grey-tinged olive-brown breast and flanks (2); large whitish mid-belly and pale grey-brown vent vs olive-brown mid-belly and vent (2); shorter tail in soror (effect size −3.12, score 2), although not in nominate; but HBW reports some vocal differences, A. flavicollis in Mali not responding to playback of song of soror. Proposed race simplicicolor (E Cameroon) not safely distinguishable from soror; pallidigula (Entebbe, in Uganda) averages rather darker overall than nominate, but not satisfactorily separable. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. f. soror (Neumann, 1914) – Northern Pale-throated Greenbul – NC Cameroon (Tibati) E to S Central African Republic and SW South Sudan, S to Congo and C DRCongo (S to N Kasai and N Maniema); also W & WC Ethiopia and adjacent E South Sudan.
  • A. f. flavigula Cabanis, 1880 – Southern Pale-throated Greenbul – Angola, SE & E DRCongo (S from S Kasai, S Maniema and Kivu), Uganda, W Kenya, W Tanzania and Zambia.
  • Descriptive notes

    c. 22·5 cm; male 46–60 g, female 37–47 g (nominate), unsexed 37·7–45·8 g (soror). Adult has largely greyish-olive head, becoming greenish-olive from hindneck to rump... read more


    Song a string of harsh, nasal, grating “chow” or “kio” notes interspersed with shorter notes,... read more


    Wooded and bushy habitats away from forest, including open woodland, gallery forest, orchard-bush,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Fruit, including Rauwolfia, Solanum, Trema, guava, mango, red pepper; also some insects, including beetles (... read more


    Nesting recorded in Dec in PRCongo, Dec–Jul (breeding condition Sept–Oct) in DRCongo, Oct–Dec in Rwanda, Sept in Sudan, Dec and Apr in... read more


    Sedentary, at least in Gabon.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Status varies; considered scarce, not uncommon, common or locally abundant in different parts of its extensive range. Only... read more

    Recommended citation

    del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Pale-throated Greenbul (Atimastillas flavigula). 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 21 August 2019).