Babblers (Timaliidae)

African Hill-babbler (Pseudoalcippe abyssinica) - HBW 12, p. 135

French: Pseudalcippe d’Abyssinie German: Mönchsbuschdrossling Spanish: Timalí Abisinio
Other common names: Abyssinian Hill Babbler, Mountain Babbler, Hill Akalat

Taxonomy: Drymophila abyssinica Rüppell, 1840, Simen Mountains, Begemdir Province, northern Ethiopia.
Genus possibly closely related to Sylvia, currently in family Sylviidae; has in the past been merged variously with Illadopsis and Alcippe. Species often treated as conspecific with P. atriceps, and strongly similar in voice, but presence on Bioko and Mt Cameroon, in close proximity to populations of latter in Nigeria and Cameroon, tends to indicate that the two are distinct. Race ansorgei sometimes regarded as inseparable from nominate. Proposed race chyulu (from Chyulu Hills, in Kenya) treated as synonym of nominate; stictigula (N Malawi and .. View all taxonomy...

Taxonomy: Drymophila abyssinica Rüppell, 1840, Simen Mountains, Begemdir Province, northern Ethiopia.
Genus possibly closely related to Sylvia, currently in family Sylviidae; has in the past been merged variously with Illadopsis and Alcippe. Species often treated as conspecific with P. atriceps, and strongly similar in voice, but presence on Bioko and Mt Cameroon, in close proximity to populations of latter in Nigeria and Cameroon, tends to indicate that the two are distinct. Race ansorgei sometimes regarded as inseparable from nominate. Proposed race chyulu (from Chyulu Hills, in Kenya) treated as synonym of nominate; stictigula (N Malawi and NW Mozambique) synonymized with stierlingi. Five subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • monachus ( Reichenow, 1892) - Mt Cameroon, in W Cameroon.
  • claudei ( Alexander, 1903) - Bioko I (Fernando Póo).
  • abyssinica ( Rüppell, 1840) - C Ethiopia, SE Sudan, E Uganda, W & S Kenya and NE Tanzania.

     See all 5 subspecies
  • monachus ( Reichenow, 1892) - Mt Cameroon, in W Cameroon.
  • claudei ( Alexander, 1903) - Bioko I (Fernando Póo).
  • abyssinica ( Rüppell, 1840) - C Ethiopia, SE Sudan, E Uganda, W & S Kenya and NE Tanzania.
  • ansorgei (Rothschild, 1918) - WC Angola, SE DRCongo and W Tanzania.
  • stierlingi ( Reichenow, 1898) - EC & SW Tanzania, Nyika Plateau (NE Zambia and N ­Malawi), and NW Mozambique.