Family Sunbirds (Nectariniidae)

Near Threatened

Usambara Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris usambaricus)


French: Souimanga des Usambara German: Usambaranektarvogel Spanish: Suimanga de los Usambara

Cinnyris mediocris usambaricus


, 1922,

Mlalo, near Lushoto, west Usambara


Until recently considered conspecific with C. mediocris and C. fuelleborni, but molecular evidence invoked to produce split#R. Differs from both species in its apparently anomalous song#R (but only one recording) involving shorter well-separated phrases (3) of identical notes repeated (3); notably shorter tail (allow 2). Differs from C. mediocris also in its notably longer bill (allow 2); narrower red breastband (1); and royal-blue vs paler blue uppertail-coverts (1). From C. fuelleborni also in its much narrower red breastband (2); royal-blue vs violet-blue uppertail-coverts (1); and female with paler, yellower mid-belly vs belly continuously olive (1). Monotypic.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.

SE Kenya (Taita Hills) and NE Tanzania (Usambara Mts).

Descriptive notes

11–12 cm. Male has head and neck, upperparts, including lesser and median wing-coverts, and chin to breast iridescent golden-green, tinged blue near tips of feathers, lores... read more


Poorly known. This species seems to differ from both former conspecifics (C. mediocris/... read more


Montane forests, bamboo and gardens. Principally recorded at 600–1500 m.

Food and feeding

No information, but overall diet and foraging behaviour both presumably similar to much better-studied and formerly conspecific C.... read more


No information.



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. Considered to be generally common, being recorded as occurring at a density of six per 500 net/m/hours on Mt... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Usambara Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris usambaricus). 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).