Family Weavers (Ploceidae)

Least Concern

Red-vented Malimbe (Malimbus scutatus)


French: Malimbe à queue rouge German: Rotsteißweber Spanish: Malimbo culirrojo

S[y]cobius scutatus


, 1849,

‘Western Africa’ = Sierra Leone


Race scutopartitus fairly distinctive, the male with a somewhat more extensive red breast (1), the female with a ragged black mesial line dividing the red breast (2), and both sexes being rather larger (unmeasured but allow 2); vocal evidence required. Two subspecies recognized.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.
Subspecies and Distribution
  • M. s. scutatus (Cassin, 1849) – Western Red-vented Malimbe – Sierra Leone, SE Guinea, Liberia, S Ivory Coast and SW Ghana.
  • M. s. scutopartitus Reichenow, 1894 – Eastern Red-vented Malimbe – SE Benin, S Nigeria and SW Cameroon.
  • Descriptive notes

    17 cm; 28–33 g. Male nominate race has forehead, crown and nape scarlet-red, linked by broad red band to large scarlet patch across breast; lores, cheek, ear-coverts,... read more


    Song described as melodious and pleasant, with repeated phrases, "peeyo-peeyo-tsitsi-pyurr-tsu-wee-... read more


    Formerly inhabited upper canopy and tall emergent trees in mature lowland forest; now found also in... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet chiefly insects, e.g. caterpillars (Lepidoptera) in stomach contents; also eats husks of oil palm nuts. Forages mainly in canopy, in... read more


    Records of breeding season based primarily on nest-building and sightings of juveniles: in Feb in Guinea, Dec–Feb (also active at... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common within forest zone. Isolated record (of nominate race) from Togo. Total of 110 specimens of this species (of more than 7000 birds, of... read more

    Recommended citation

    Craig, A. (2020). Red-vented Malimbe (Malimbus scutatus). 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 22 February 2020).