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Bar-throated apalis

Apalis thoracica

(Photo from Hermanus Bird Club)

Common name:
bar-throated apalis (en); apalis-de-coleira (pt); apalis à collier (fr); apalis de garganta barreada (es); halsband-feinsänger (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Cisticolidae

This species is found in eastern and southern Africa, from southern Kenya, through Tanzania, Zambia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, and into eastern and southern South Africa.

These birds are 11-13 cm long and weigh 12 g.

The bar-throated apalis is found in tropical moist forests and scrublands, but also second growths, riparian forests, dry scrublands around sand dunes, grasslands, rural gardens and plantations.

They mainly eat invertebrates gleaned from leaves and twigs, such as caterpillars, flies, grasshoppers, bugs and spiders, supplemented with fruits and flowers.

Bar-throated apalises breed in August-March. The nest is an oval ball with a side entrance, made of fine grasses, moss, lichens and rootlets, secured with spider web. It is typically placed among the foliage of scrub, sapling or creeper, 1-3 m above ground. The female lays 2-4  bluish-white eggs with reddish-brown spots, which are incubated by both parents for 14-18 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 13-18 days after hatching, but only become independent some time later.

IUCN status – LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and is described as common in most areas. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

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