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Rufous-bellied Tit, Sakania, DRC (14766509703).jpg
Melaniparus rufiventris (Rufous-bellied tit)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Paridae
Genus: Melaniparus
Bonaparte, 1850

See text

Melaniparus is a genus of birds in the tit family. The species were formerly placed in the speciose genus Parus but were moved to Melaniparus based on a molecular phylogenetic analysis published in 2013 that showed that the members formed a distinct clade.[1] The genus Melaniparus had originally been introduced by the French naturalist Charles Lucien Bonaparte in 1850.[2] The type species was subsequently designated as the southern black tit (Melaniparus niger).[3][4] The name of the genus combines the Ancient Greek melas, melanos "black" and the genus Parus introduced by Carl Linnaeus in 1758.[5]

The following species, all from Africa and mostly having dark plumage, have been placed in the genus:[6]

Image Scientific name Common Name Distribution
Melaniparus guineensis White-shouldered black tit Africa from Senegal in the west to Kenya and Ethiopia in the east
Melaniparus leucomelas insignis, Cuanavale-rivier, Birding Weto Tours, a.jpg Melaniparus leucomelas White-winged black tit central Africa, from Angola in the west to Ethiopia in the east
Southern Black Tit, Parus niger, at Pilanesberg National Park, Northwest Province, South Africa (16834192359).jpg Melaniparus niger Southern black tit Angola to the Eastern Cape, South Africa
Melaniparus carpi, Kunene River Lodge, Birding Weto, a.jpg Melaniparus carpi Carp's tit Angola and Namibia
White-bellied tit.jpg Melaniparus albiventris White-bellied tit Cameroon, Kenya, Nigeria, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda
Melaniparus leuconotus White-backed black tit Eritrea and Ethiopia.
Melaniparus funereus Dusky tit Angola, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, and Uganda
Rufous-bellied Tit, Sakania, DRC (14766509703).jpg Melaniparus rufiventris Rufous-bellied tit Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Angola, Zambia, Namibia and Botswana
Melaniparus pallidiventris Cinnamon-breasted tit Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe
Melaniparus fringillinus Red-throated tit Kenya and Tanzania
Melaniparus fasciiventer.jpg Melaniparus fasciiventer Stripe-breasted tit Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda.
Melaniparus thruppi Acacia tit or Somali Tit Ethiopia and Somalia south to north eastern Tanzania
Melaniparus griseiventris, oog van Cuitorivier, Birding Weto, a.jpg Melaniparus griseiventris Miombo tit Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe
Melaniparus cinerascens (cropped).jpg Melaniparus cinerascens Ashy tit Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.
Parus afer -Namaqua National Park, Northern Cape, South Africa -adult-6.jpg Melaniparus afer Grey tit Lesotho and South Africa


  1. ^ Johansson, U.S.; Ekman, J.; Bowie, R.C.K.; Halvarsson, P.; Ohlson, J.I.; Price, T.D.; Ericson, P.G.P. (2013). "A complete multilocus species phylogeny of the tits and chickadees (Aves: Paridae)". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 69 (3): 852-860. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2013.06.019. PMID 23831453.
  2. ^ Bonaparte, Charles Lucian (1850). Conspectus Generum Avium (in Latin). Volume 1. Leiden: E.J. Brill. p. 228.
  3. ^ Gray, George Robert (1855). Catalogue of the Genera and Subgenera of Birds Contained in the British Museum. London: British Museum. p. 38.
  4. ^ Dickinson, E.C.; Christidis, L., eds. (2014). The Howard & Moore Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines (4th ed.). Eastbourne, UK: Aves Press. p. 432. ISBN 978-0-9568611-2-2.
  5. ^ Jobling, J.A. (2019). del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J.; Christie, D.A.; de Juana, E. (eds.). "Key to Scientific Names in Ornithology". Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions. Retrieved 2019.
  6. ^ Gill, Frank; Donsker, David (eds.). "Waxwings and their allies, tits & penduline tits". World Bird List Version 6.1. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 2016.

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