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Species Guide

Black-headed Apalis

Apalis melanocephala

The Black-headed Apalis, scientifically known as Apalis melanocephala, is a charming bird belonging to the Cisticolidae family. It presents itself with a striking contrast between its dark head and lighter body.

Identification Tips

When attempting to identify this species, look for its distinctive black head, which is a key feature setting it apart from other birds. The rest of the plumage tends to be more subdued, allowing it to blend into its natural surroundings.


The Black-headed Apalis is quite adaptable and can be found in a variety of forested environments. It thrives in subtropical or tropical dry forests, as well as moist lowland and montane forests, where the climate is more humid.


This species has a relatively wide range across the African continent. It can be spotted in countries such as Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Somalia, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe, where it is a resident bird, living there year-round.


Observing the Black-headed Apalis in its natural habitat, one might note its active nature. It is often seen flitting about in the forest canopy, busily searching for food or interacting with its kin.

Conservation status

Fortunately, the Black-headed Apalis is currently listed as Least Concern by the IUCN. This indicates that, for now, the species does not face any immediate threats to its survival on a global scale.

Black-headed Apalis Sounds

Recorded by: © 
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Black-headed Apalis on Birda

A map showing the sighting location
Suzette Theron
23 Apr 2024 - 5:57am
South Africa

More Cisticolas & Allies

A photo of a Yellow-breasted Apalis (Apalis flavida)

Yellow-breasted Apalis

Apalis flavida
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