Cape Batis ( Batis capensis, family: Malaconotidae)

cape batis kruger national park birds The Cape Batis (Latin name Batis capensis) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 700 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 713 also a picture of the Cape Batis on page 720. The Cape Batis belongs to the family of birds classified as Malaconotidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Cape Batis is also known by these other names: Puff-back Flycatcher, Cape Puff-back Flycatcher.

The map of the Kruger you see on this page shows the areas (coloured orange) where this bird has been identified. The basic information was provided by the Avian Demographic Unit based at UCT and I created the maps from that information ... the green dots show the locations of the various Kruger National Park Rest Camps

Endemic species is one that is confined to a specific country or region. For example certain birds endemic to South Africa only exist in that country. One such example is the Cape Batis and this species depends upon a particular habitat for survival. Destroy that habitat and the bird will possibly be lost forever.

In terms of distribution of the Cape Batis in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. Cape Batis : see above distribution map.

Identification assistance for this avian species ...

One of the first indicators to take note of when trying to identify a bird is it relative size. For example how big is the bird compared to a well known familiar bird. The Cape Batis is an extremely small bird about half the size of a house sparrow. The height of the Cape Batis is about 12 cms and its weight is about 12 gms

You will find that the male Cape Batis plumage and colours are different to that of the female Cape Batis

  • Head is grey, black.
  • Eye is yellow.
  • Bill is black.
  • Throat is white.
  • Back is grey.
  • Legs are black.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Cape Batis feeds in tree and shrub foliage mainly


Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Cape Batis is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Batis capensis will seek out a new mate

The nesting habit of Cape Batis is to create the nest in branches of a tree or shrub. The bird lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 1 to 3

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Cape Batis are: woodlands . The Cape Batis is also at home in wetland and bushveld areas.

You will normally see the Cape Batis in pairs or flocks and not as single birds.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Ingedle/Unongedle

Zulu ... uDokotela/umNqube

Afrikaans ...Kaapse Bosbontrokkie

German ... Kapschnpper

Portuguese ... Batis do Cabo

French ... Pririt du Cap

Dutch ... Bruinflank-Vliegenvanger

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For in-depth birding information please refer to these authoritative avian references ...

Robert's 7th edition number ... 700

The main reference source for this data was "Roberts - Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition" . Other references were "Newmans Birds of the Kruger Park" by Keith Newman published circa 1980 . Names in foreign languages were obtained from the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town website ,