Nilgiri Flycatcher Eumyias albicaudatus


Justification of Red List category
This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (extent of occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). Therefore, the species is now listed as Least Concern.

Population justification
The population size is unknown, but the species is described as common, especially at higher elevations (del Hoyo et al. 2006).

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be in decline owing to ongoing habitat destruction.

Distribution and population

This species is an endemic resident in the Western Ghats of southern India, where it can be common in suitable habitat. While its range is small, its tolerance for disturbed habitats suggests that it is not immediately threatened by habitat modification.


It occurs in evergreen hill forests and woodlands favouring forest edges, clearings, dense vegetation near streams, shade coffee and cardamom plantations and sholas, from 600 m to the summits, being most numerous above 1,200 m. It forages alone or in loose association with other flycatchers in the lower storeys of vegetation on insects and berries. It breeds from February until June.


An increasing human population has led to increased illegal encroachment into Western Ghat forests, livestock grazing and the harvesting of fuelwood, notably for tea factories (J. Taylor in litt. 2011) and huge quantities of forest products such as bamboo and canes. Furthermore, hydroelectric power development and road-building are causing reductions in forest cover in some areas which may impact this species.

Conservation actions

Conservation and Research Actions Underway
None are known, although it does occur within shade-coffee plantations, providing a good incentive for this practice in preference to sun coffee.

Conservation and Research Actions Proposed
Monitor threats to the species in order that emerging ones can be acted upon and mitigated as early as possible. Protect areas of suitable habitat.


Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Taylor, J., Westrip, J., Ashpole, J, Bird, J.

Praveen, J., Santharam, V., Vinod, U., Nameer, P.O.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Eumyias albicaudatus. Downloaded from on 27/09/2023. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 27/09/2023.