Spot-breasted Ibis (Bostrychia rara)

Spot-breasted Ibis

[order] CICONIIFORMES | [family] Threskiornithidae | [latin] Bostrychia rara | [authority] Rothschild,Hartert and Kleinschmidt, 1897 | [UK] Spot-breasted Ibis | [FR] Ibis vermicule | [DE] Fleckenbrust-Ibis | [ES] Ibis Moteado | [NL] Geschubde Ibis


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Bostrychia rara AF w, c


Bostrychia is a genus of ibises in the Threskiornithidae family. Member species are found in many countries throughout Africa and are cliff-breeding ibise. Bostrychia olivacea has been split into B. olivacea and B. bocagei. Dwarf Olive Ibis Bostrychia bocagei of Sao Tome differs from African Olive Ibis B. olivacea of West and Central Africa in size in wing, bill, tarsus 58-70 mm, tail, bill colour (pale brown with pale red on culmen and tip vs all pale to brick red in rothschildi), and coloration of upperparts (lacking greenish and some bronze sheen of other races), plus an evident but still poorly documented difference in voice.

Physical charateristics

Small Ibis with ochre-buff or cinnomon-buff featehrs in neck, breast and belly. Female more turquoise spots and streaks. Bill less obvious red.

Listen to the sound of Spot-breasted Ibis

[audio: Ibis.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 47 cm size max.: 48 cm
incubation min.: 19 days incubation max.: 21 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 1  
      eggs max.: 3  


Africa : West, Central. This species is widespread in west African lowland forests from Liberia east to the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda


The species frequents forested streams and wooded swamps, always above or near water, in lowland forest. The same trees are used for roost sites all year-round.


It is likely to breed for most of the year, especially during periods of peak rainfall, but it does not breed during the long dry season when water levels are lowest. The species nests in solitary pairs throughout the year. Clutch size is 2 eggs which are incubated for about 3 weeks.

Feeding habits

It feeds on aquatic snails, worms, beetles, larvae and grubs, which it probes for in muddy banks and swamps


This species has an extremely 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). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not 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). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Spot-breasted Ibis status Least Concern


Sedentary throughout range

Distribution map

Spot-breasted Ibis distribution range map

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