Helmetshrike

Helmetshrikes are a family uniting some smallish to mid-sized songbird species. They were included with the true shrikes in the family Laniidae, later on split between several presumably closely related groups such as bushshrikes (Malaconotidae) and cuckooshrikes (Campephagidae), but are now considered sufficiently distinctive to be separated from that group into the family Vangidae.

Helmetshrikes
Prionops plumatus
White-crested helmetshrike
Prionops plumatus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Vangidae
Genus: Prionops
Vieillot, 1816

Description and ecology

This is an African group of species which are found in scrub or open woodland. They are similar in feeding habits to shrikes, hunting insects and other small prey from a perch on a bush or tree.

Although similar in build to the shrikes, these tend to be colourful species with the distinctive crests or other head ornaments, such as wattles, from which they get their name.

Helmetshrikes are noisy and sociable birds, some of which breed in loose colonies. They lay 2–4 eggs in neat, well-hidden nests.

Systematics

As the relationships of the shrike-like birds are increasingly disentangled, the helmetshrikes appear to form an evolutionary radiation with the Vangidae.

External links

Blouberg Nature Reserve

Blouberg Nature Reserve is a protected area situated close to Vivo, west of Louis Trichardt in the Limpopo Province, of South Africa. It covers an area of 9,360 hectares (23,100 acres) from the eastern portion of the Blouberg mountain range down to the savanna near the Brak River, and is managed and administrated by the Limpopo Provincial Government.

Cheringoma Plateau

The Cheringoma Plateau is a low plateau in Sofala Province of Mozambique. It lies mostly within Cheringoma, Muanza, and Marromeu districts.

Chestnut-fronted helmetshrike

The chestnut-fronted helmetshrike (Prionops scopifrons) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

It is found in Kenya, Mozambique, Somalia, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests, subtropical or tropical dry shrubland, and subtropical or tropical moist shrubland found around the equator.

Gabela helmetshrike

The Gabela helmetshrike (Prionops gabela) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

It is endemic to Angola.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. It is threatened by habitat loss.

Grey-crested helmetshrike

The grey-crested helmetshrike (Prionops poliolophus) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

It is found in Kenya and Tanzania.

Its natural habitats are dry savanna and subtropical or tropical dry shrubland.

It is threatened by habitat loss.

List of birds of Africa

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Africa. The area covered by this list is the Africa region defined by the American Birding Association's listing rules. In addition to the continent itself, the area includes Socotra in the Arabian Sea, Zanzibar, the Canary Islands, and São Tomé, Príncipe, and Annobon in the Gulf of Guinea. It does not include Madeira, the Azores, Cape Verde, the Sinai Peninsula, Madagascar, Seychelles or the Comoro Islands.

This list is that of the African Bird Club (ABC) supplemented by Bird Checklists of the World (Avibase) and The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World.This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families, and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) are those of the Clements list. Taxonomic changes are on-going. As more research is gathered from studies of distribution, behavior, and DNA, the names, sequence, and number of families and species change every year. Furthermore, different approaches to ornithological nomenclature have led to concurrent systems of classification (see Sibley-Ahlquist taxonomy). Differences in common and scientific names between the Clements taxonomy and that of the ABC are frequent but are seldom noted here.

List of birds of Kenya

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Kenya. The avifauna of Kenya include a total of 1105 species, of which eight are endemic, 75 are accidental, and two have been introduced by humans. An additional six species are considered "uncertain" (see below) and are not included in the count.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 edition. Unless otherwise noted, the list is that of the African Bird Club's Checklist of the Birds of Kenya. The club will be referred to as ABC throughout. Differences in common and scientific names between the Clements taxonomy and that of the ABC are frequent but are seldom noted here.

The following tags highlight several categories of occurrence other than regular migrants and non-endemic residents. The "A", "I", and "U" tags follow the ABC list. The "E" tags are based on Clements, because the ABC does not note endemics. The notes of population status are from the Avibase Bird Checklists of the World.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Kenya (also called a vagrant)

(E) Endemic - a species endemic to Kenya

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Kenya as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

(U) Uncertain - a species recorded but not confirmed in Kenya

List of birds of Malawi

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Malawi. The avifauna of Malawi include a total of 650 species, of which one has been introduced by humans and thirty-one are rare or accidental. Ten species are globally threatened. Several bird subspecies are endemic to Malawi. One of these, the yellow-throated apalis, is treated as a full endemic species by some authors. Several species such as the Thyolo alethe are near-endemic to Malawi with only a restricted range outside the country.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Malawi.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories, but not all species fall into one of these categories. Those that do not are commonly occurring native species.

(A) Accidental - a rarely occurring species with no more than about five records in Malawi

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Malawi as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

(Ex) Extirpated - a species that no longer occurs in Malawi although populations exist elsewhere

List of birds of Mozambique

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Mozambique. The avifauna of Mozambique include a total of 740 species, of which two have been introduced by humans and thirteen are rare or accidental. Twenty species are globally threatened.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Mozambique.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories, but not all species fall into one of these categories. Those that do not are commonly occurring native species.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Mozambique

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Mozambique as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

List of birds of Rwanda

This is a list of bird species recorded in Rwanda. The avifauna of Rwanda include a total of 703 confirmed species. 510 resident species. 183 visiting species (including vagrants and migrants). Ten species are considered extirpated in Rwanda.This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) largely follows The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2018 update. However, in an attempt to make the list more accessible to a wide range of users several things have been done.

Scientific names follow those used in the linked articles.

Where there is an alternative common name (that may be used more frequently in the UK and East Africa) this is included after the Clements' common name.

Where subspecies or an eBird preferred taxon is available this is included e.g. yellow wagtail, Motacilla flava.

The species listed here are the same as used on the eBird in Rwanda.The following tags have been used to highlight several categories, but not all species fall into one of these categories. Those that do not are commonly occurring native species.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Rwanda, where known the number of sightings for rare records is indicated.

(Ex) Extirpated - a species that no longer occurs in Rwanda although populations exist elsewhere

List of birds of Somalia

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Somalia. The avifauna of Somalia include a total of 727 species, of which eight are endemic, one has been introduced by humans and one is rare or accidental. Fourteen species are globally threatened.

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 6th edition. The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Somalia.

The following tags have been used to highlight several categories, but not all species fall into one of these categories. Those that do not are commonly occurring native species.

(A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Somalia

(E) Endemic - a species endemic to Somalia

(I) Introduced - a species introduced to Somalia as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions

Red-billed helmetshrike

The red-billed helmetshrike or chestnut-bellied helmetshrike (Prionops caniceps) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family, Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

It is found in West Africa, occurring in Benin, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Togo. In Central Africa it is replaced by the rufous-bellied helmet-shrike (P. rufiventris) which is sometimes regarded as a subspecies of the chestnut-bellied Helmetshrike.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forest and subtropical or tropical moist shrubland.

Retz's helmetshrike

The Retz's helmetshrike (Prionops retzii) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family Vangidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

Rufous-bellied helmetshrike

The rufous-bellied helmetshrike or Gabon helmetshrike (Prionops rufiventris) is a passerine bird belonging to the helmetshrike family, Prionopidae. It inhabits tropical forest in Central Africa. It is sometimes included within the chestnut-bellied helmetshrike (P. caniceps) of West Africa.

Thick-billed cuckoo

The thick-billed cuckoo (Pachycoccyx audeberti) is a species of cuckoo in the family Cuculidae. It is monotypic within the genus Pachycoccyx. and can easily be distinguished from other brood parasitic cuckoo species by its very thick bill, which is shaped in a rather hawklike fashion.

Vanga

The Vangidae family (from vanga, Malagasy for the hook-billed vanga, Vanga curvirostris) comprises a group of often shrike-like medium-sized birds distributed from Asia to Africa, including the vangas of Madagascar to which the family owes its name. Many species in this family were previously classified elsewhere in other families. Recent molecular techniques made it possible to assign these species to Vangidae, thereby solving several taxonomic enigmas.

White-crested helmetshrike

The white-crested helmetshrike (Prionops plumatus), also known as the white helmetshrike, is a species of passerine bird in the helmetshrike family Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

Yellow-crested helmetshrike

The yellow-crested helmetshrike (Prionops alberti) is a species of bird in the helmetshrike family Prionopidae, formerly usually included in the Malaconotidae.

It is endemic to Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forest. It is threatened by habitat loss.

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