Family Old World Flycatchers and Chats (Muscicapidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-breasted Forest-robin (Stiphrornis xanthogaster)


French: Rougegorge du Congo German: Gelbbrust-Waldrötel Spanish: Petirrojo selvático dorsigrís

Stiphrornis xanthogaster


, 1903,

River Ja, Cameroon


Hitherto treated as conspecific with S. erythrothorax, but differs in its yellowish-tan or bright orange-yellow vs dull orange breast (2); creamy-white or yellow-washed vs white belly (1); song with higher number of shorter notes (2) delivered in longer phrases (2)#R. It differs from S. pyrrholaemus in characters given under that species. Race sanghensis differs from nominate by its bright orange-yellow vs yellowish throat (2); bright orange-yellow vs yellowish-tan breast (2); pale yellow vs creamy-white belly (1); study of vocalizations needed to determine any consistent differences. Race rudderi, described very recently as a phylogenetic species, has not been scored but morphological differences are obviously rather minor, while genetic data clearly place it within same clade as nominate race and sanghensis. Proposed race mabirae (DRCongo and Uganda) merged with xanthogaster. Three subspecies recognized.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.
Subspecies and Distribution
  • S. x. xanthogaster Sharpe, 1903 – Eastern Forest-robin – SE Cameroon (R Dja) and NE Gabon (over R Congo watershed) E to extreme SW South Sudan, N & C DRCongo and W & S Uganda.
  • S. x. sanghensis Beresford & Cracraft, 1999 – Sangha Forest-robin – SW Central African Republic (Dzanga-Sangha Forest Reserve).
  • S. x. rudderi Voelker et al., 2016 – Rudder's Forest-robin – Yoko Forest Reserve, Ubundu district, and Turumbu, Yawenda district, DRCongo#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    11–13 cm; 15–17 g (nominate), 15–22·5 g (sanghensis), 18 g (rudderi). Small and short-tailed. Adult nominate is like race gabonensis of S.... read more


    Song involves duetting between pair-members, male giving sharp trills and whistles, female rasping... read more


    Understorey and, to lesser extent, middle levels of primary lowland forest, regenerating forest,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Small insects and their larvae, including beetles, ants, termites, caterpillars and parasitic wasps. Forages mainly on ground or below 2 m... read more


    Breeding-condition birds May–Jun in Central African Republic; Oct–Mar (juveniles Mar–Jun, Aug–Sept) in Gabon; Aug–Jan, probably all year,... read more


    Sedentary, seeming to disperse very little from natal area (maximum 2·5 km in Gabon); record in Apr... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Race sanghensis judged Data Deficient when treated as full species; known only from Dzanga-Sangha Rainforest Reserve (3359... read more

    Recommended citation

    del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Yellow-breasted Forest-robin (Stiphrornis xanthogaster). 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 February 2020).