Family Old World Flycatchers and Chats (Muscicapidae)

Near Threatened

Zappey's Flycatcher (Cyanoptila cumatilis)


French: Gobemouche de Zappey German: Türkisblauschnäpper Spanish: Papamoscas de Zappey

Cyanoptila cumatilis

Thayer and Bangs

, 1909,

Ma-fu-ling, 5500 feet [c. 1680 m], north-west Hubei, China


Until recently considered conspecific with C. cyanomelana, but differs in its dark-streaked turquoise vs all-blackish throat and breast (3); broadly black-streaked turquoise vs unstreaked or lightly black-streaked pale royal blue upperparts (3); slightly larger size (effect size for tail 0.96, score 1); lower-pitched, slower song (3)#R. Monotypic.


C & EC China, from Beijing S to S Shaanxi and W Hubei#R, probably further W to N Sichuan; non-breeding S Thailand, Malay Peninsula, Sumatra and Java#R, scarce in N Borneo#R.

Descriptive notes

16–17 cm; c. 25 g. Male has turquoise to azure-blue breast and upperparts, blackish-blue face, and blackish line separating dark breast from white belly and undertail.... read more


Song a loud, simple melodious warble of repeated notes, typically given from most prominent trees... read more


Few data. On nesting grounds occurs in mixed coniferous and deciduous submontane forest between... read more

Food and feeding

No published information. Presumably takes small invertebrates and perhaps some fruit, as reported for C. cyanomelana.... read more


No information.


Migrates through S & SE China between early or mid Sept and late Oct (only few stragglers... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. Uncommon on nesting grounds, where numbers thought to be declining owing to loss of forest habitat. Present in... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Marks, J.S. (2020). Zappey's Flycatcher (Cyanoptila cumatilis). 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).