- Cisticola galactotes
Includes: Rufous-winged Cisticola; Coastal Cisticola; Ethiopian Cisticola; Luapula Cisticola
Length 11-15 cm, mass 10-15 g.
A 'Black-backed' Cisticola with rufous wing panels. It has a grey tail with prominent sub-terminal spots and white tips on the retrices.
Western Africa: Mauritania, Senegambia, Senegal, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Mali, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Gabon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola
Eastern Africa: Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Zambia, Mozambique, Malawi
Southern Africa: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal
Cisticola galactotes (sensu lato) has as many as 12 subspecies described.
The variety of song types within this complex suggests that it should be split into as many as five species (Hustler, 2001; Sinclair & Ryan, 2003; Hockey et al., 2005; Gill & Wright, 2006; Ryan et al., 2006 cited by Lepage, 2008):
- Winding Cisticola C. marginatus marginatus, C. m. amphilectus, C. m. zalingei, C. m. nyansae, and C. m. suahelicus, from Africa between 17°N and 12°S (Senegal in the west to Sudan and Kenya in the east and as far south as northern Angola, Democratic Republic of Congo, northern Zambia and Tanzania).
- Luapula Cisticola C. luapula luapula, C. l. schoutedeni, and C. l. stagnans, from southern and eastern Angola, southern Zambia, northern Namibia, and northern Botswana.
- Rufous-winged Cisticola C. galactotes galactotes, and C. g. isodactylus, from the lowlands of southern Mozambique, extreme eastern South Africa and extreme south-eastern Zimbabwe.
- Ethiopian Cisticola C. lugubris, from the highlands of Ethiopia; and
- Coastal Cisticola C. haematocephalus, from the coast of southern Somalia, Kenya and northern Tanzania.
Usually singly or in pairs. Forages in undergrowth for invertebrates.
Monogamous and territorial. The nest is a ball of dry grass with a side entrance, usually built above water in a marsh. Two to four eggs are laid and incubated for about 12 days.
- Gill F & Wright M. 2006. Birds of the World: Recommended English Names. Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ, USA. ISBN 9780691128276
- Hockey PAR, Dean WRJ & Ryan PG (eds) 2005. Robert's Birds of Southern Africa, 7th edition. John Voelcker Bird Book Fund, Cape Town, South Africa. ISBN 0620340533
- Hustler, K. 2001. The breeding biology of the Black-backed Cisticola in north-west Zimbabwe with notes on song and specific ststus. Honeyguide 47, 25-36.
- Lepage D. 2008. Avibase. Search for "Cisticola galactotes" downloaded June 2008.
- Ryan PG, Dean WRJ, Madge SC & Pearson DJ. 2006. Family Cisticolidae (Cisticolas and allies): species accounts. Pp. 420-490 In: del Hoyo J, Elliott A & Christie DA eds. Handbook of the Birds of the World, Vol. 11. Old World Flycatchers to Old World Warblers. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. ISBN 849655306X
- Sinclair I & Ryan P. 2003. Birds of Africa south of the Sahara. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0620207299
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