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Red-collared Mountain-babbler Kupeornis rufocinctus
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
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This species is listed as Near Threatened because it is suspected to be undergoing a moderately rapid population decline owing to on-going habitat destruction and degradation, mainly through the expansion of small-scale agriculture.

Taxonomic source(s)
Dowsett, R. J.; Forbes-Watson, A. D. 1993. Checklist of birds of the Afrotropical and Malagasy regions. Tauraco Press, Li
Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.

Lioptilus rufocinctus Collar and Andrew (1988)

Distribution and population
Kupeornis rufocinctus occurs in the Albertine Rift mountains in Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (del Hoyo et al. 2007) where it is known to occur in the Itombwe Mountains, Mt Kabobo, Nyungwe Forest, and Mt Heha / Ijenda and Teza Forests (Stattersfield et al. 1998). This is a species with a restricted range and, although it can be locally very common, it is known from only a few sites.

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as occurring at high densities in suitable habitat (del Hoyo et al. 2007).

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be in moderately rapid decline owing to on-going habitat clearance and degradation caused by the expansion of shifting agriculture (del Hoyo et al. 2007).

It is a species of montane forest and bamboo at altitudes of 1,500-3,200 m. Gregarious, it is found in groups of 3-15 individuals which forage together on the trunks and branches of trees, taking insects and occasionally small fruits (Dowsett-Lemaire 1990, del Hoyo et al. 2007). The species appears to prefer very moist areas where trees are covered in mossy epiphytes; in such favourable habitat it can occur at high density, with each group having a home range of 20-25 ha. However, it is rare or absent from drier areas (Dowsett-Lemaire 1990). It feeds on insects and occasionally small fruits. Nest-building takes place in April and May, and dependent young have been observed between June and August in Rwanda (del Hoyo et al. 2007).

The level of threat to its few known sites, particularly as a result of clearance for shifting agriculture (Stattersfield et al. 1998), means that this species's long-term future is far from secure.

Conservation Actions Underway
No targeted conservation actions are known for this species, although some of its habitat is protected. Conservation Actions Proposed
Carry out surveys to obtain a total population estimate. Monitor population trends through regular surveys. Monitor rates of habitat loss and degradation across its range. Protect suitable habitat for the species.

Related state of the world's birds case studies

del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Christie, D. 2007. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 12: Picathartes to Tits and Chickadees. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Dowsett-Lemaire, F. 1990. Eco-ethology, distribution and status of Nyungwe Forest birds, Rwanda. In: Dowsett, R.J. (ed.), Enquête faunistique et floristique dans la Forêt de Nyungwe, Rwanda, pp. 31-85. Tauraco Press, Ely, U.K.

Stattersfield, A. J.; Crosby, M. J.; Long, A. J.; Wege, D. C. 1998. Endemic bird areas of the world: priorities for bird conservation. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

Further web sources of information
Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
O'Brien, A., Robertson, P. & Taylor, J.

Dowsett-Lemaire, F. & Dowsett, R.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Kupeornis rufocinctus. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Near Threatened
Family Timaliidae (Babblers and parrotbills)
Species name author (Rothschild, 1908)
Population size Unknown mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 41,400 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species