Sharpe's Apalis Apalis sharpii


Justification of Red List category
This species has a restricted range and is experiencing a moderately rapid decline due to the ongoing loss and degradation of its forest habitat. It is therefore classified as Near Threatened.

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as fairly common in forest habitat (del Hoyo et al. 2006). Density estimates of 0.5-2 males per ha in Liberia, and 20.7 individuals per km2 in Ghana have been produced (Gatter 1997, Phalan 2009).

Trend justification
The population is thought to be in decline given this likely sensitivity to habitat disturbance (del Hoyo et al. 2006), and is experiencing ongoing habitat loss and degradation. Although it can persist in selectively logged forest, it only rarely occurs in farmland where sufficient large forest trees remain (B. Phalan in litt. 2022). Tree cover loss within the range is currently estimated at 22% across ten years (Global Forest Watch 2021, using Hansen et al. [2013] data and methods disclosed therein). Assuming that forest loss is continuing at this rate, and that population declines are roughly equivalent for this highly forest dependent species, population declines may be 20-25% over ten years.

Distribution and population

This species occurs in the Upper Guinea forests, known from Guinea, Sierra Leone, LiberiaCôte d'Ivoire, Ghana, and Togo.


This species occurs in lowland forest, including gallery forest and well-developed secondary forest (Ryan 2020). It is a canopy insectivore, being very active in the canopy and sub-canopy (Beier et al. 2002, Demey 2009).


The main threat to this species is habitat loss and degradation, as it is likely sensitive to habitat disturbance (del Hoyo et al. 2006). In Ghana, it has been lost from a number of localities including Aburi Plateau and Tain Tributaries II, as a result of deforestation (Dowsett-Lemaire and Dowsett 2014). Tree cover loss within the species' range is currently estimated at 22% across ten years (Global Forest Watch 2021, using Hansen et al. [2013] data and methods disclosed therein).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
The species occurs in a number of protected areas.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Produce a robust population estimate. Survey its population density. Study the species' tolerance to habitat disturbance.


Text account compilers
Rotton, H.

Butchart, S., Dowsett, R.J., Ekstrom, J. & Phalan, B.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Apalis sharpii. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/species/factsheet/sharpes-apalis-apalis-sharpii on 04/12/2023.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org on 04/12/2023.