Ploceus is a genus of birds in the weaver family, Ploceidae. They are native to the Indomalayan and Afrotropical realms.

The birds of Africa, comprising all the species which occur in the Ethiopian region (1896) (14748527162).jpg
Bocage's weaver (P. temporalis) and
Bertram's weaver (P. bertrandi)
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Ploceidae
Genus: Ploceus
Cuvier, 1816

see text

  • Pachyphantes
Ploceinae, 2nd group
Nelicourvi weaver
(genus Ploceus)
"reinstated Nelicurvius"
Cassin's malimbe
(genus Malimbus)
"extended Malimbus"
Red-headed weaver
(genus Anaplectes)
"extended Malimbus"
Southern masked weaver
(genus Ploceus)
"extended Malimbus"

Taxonomy and systematicsEdit


The genus Ploceus was introduced by the French naturalist Georges Cuvier in 1816.[1] The type species was subsequently designated as the baya weaver.[2] The genus name is from Ancient Greek πλοκευς plokeus meaning "weaver", and is derived from the Greek word πλεκω plekō "to entwine".[3]

Based on recent DNA-analysis, the genus Ploceus is almost certainly polyphyletic. If all species currently included in the genus would remain and the genus would be made monophyletic, it would have to encompass the entire subfamily Ploceinae. The Ploceinae can be divided into two groups. In the first group, the widowbirds and bishops (genus Euplectes) are sister to a clade in which the genera Foudia and Quelea are closest relatives and which further includes the Asiatic species of Ploceus, i.e. P. manyar, P. philippinus, P. benghalensis, P. megarhynchus, (and P. hypoxanthus, although untested). Since Georges Cuvier picked P. philippinus as the type species, these five species would logically remain assigned to the genus Ploceus.

Basic to the second group is a clade consisting of both species so far included in Ploceus that live on Madagascar, P. nelicourvi and P. sakalava, and these are morphologically very distinct from the remaining species. These two species could in future be assigned to the genus Nelicurvius that was erected by Charles Lucien Bonaparte in 1850, but which was merged with Ploceus later on. This second group further contains the genera Malimbus and Anaplectes, and all remaining Ploceus species. As Malimbus is the earlier name, erected by Vieillot et al. in 1805, the remaining species of Ploceus, as well as Anaplectes rubiceps, could in future be assigned to Malimbus.[4] These changes are largely corroborated by morphological revisions.[5][6] Provided that the other genera that have not been proposed to be merged into an extended "Malimbus" are monophyletic, the following (incomplete) tree expresses current insights.

subfamily Ploceinae
"true Ploceus"

P. megarhynchus

P. benghalensis

P. manyar

P. philippinus

genus Foudia

genus Quelea

genus Euplectes

"reinstated Nelicurvius"

P. nelicourvi

P. sakalava

"extended Malimbus"

Malimbus malimbicus

Malimbus nitens

Malimbus cassini

Malimbus racheliae

Anaplectes rubiceps

P. bicolor

Malimbus rubricollis

P. albinucha

P. insignis

P. olivaceiceps

P. xanthops

P. velatus

P. subaureus

P. nigricollis

P. ocularis

P. pelzelni

P. luteolus

P. melanogaster

P. alienus

P. vitellinus

P. rubiginosus

P. aurantius

P. bertrandi

P. baglafecht

P. nigerrimus

P. weynsi

P. cucullatus

P. castaneiceps

P. xanthopterus

P. heuglini

P. taeniopterus

P. melanocephalus

P. castanops

Species listEdit

Speke's weaver (Ploceus spekei, below) and village weaver (Ploceus cucullatus subsp. nigriceps)

The genus contains 64 species.[7]

Image Common name Scientific name Distribution
  Baglafecht weaver Ploceus baglafecht eastern and central Africa
Bannerman's weaver Ploceus bannermani Cameroon and Nigeria.
Bates's weaver Ploceus batesi Cameroon.
Black-chinned weaver Ploceus nigrimentus Bailundu Highlands of western Angola, on the Batéké Plateau in Republic of the Congo, and in eastern Gabon.
Bertram's weaver Ploceus bertrandi Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Zambia.
  Slender-billed weaver Ploceus pelzelni western Africa.
Loango weaver Ploceus subpersonatus Angola, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Gabon.
  Little weaver Ploceus luteo western, central and eastern Africa.
  Spectacled weaver Ploceus ocularis central, eastern and south-eastern Africa
  Black-necked weaver Ploceus nigricollis tropical Africa from Senegal and northern Angola to South Sudan and Tanzania.
  Strange weaver Ploceus alienus Albertine Rift montane forests.
  Black-billed weaver Ploceus melanogaster central Africa.
  Cape weaver Ploceus capensis southern Africa.
Bocage's weaver Ploceus temporalis Angola, southern Democratic Republic of the Congo and northwestern Zambia.
  Eastern golden weaver Ploceus subaureus eastern and south-eastern Africa.
  Holub's golden weaver Ploceus xanthops Gabon to Uganda and Kenya, south to northern Namibia, northern Botswana and eastern South Africa
  Orange weaver Ploceus aurantius western and central Africa.
Heuglin's masked weaver Ploceus heuglini Senegal, Gambia and Mali to Ivory Coast and east to Uganda and western Kenya.
  Golden palm weaver Ploceus bojeri eastern Africa.
  Taveta weaver Ploceus castaneiceps African Savannah in Kenya and Tanzania.
Príncipe weaver Ploceus princeps São Tomé and Príncipe
  Northern brown-throated weaver Ploceus castanops Uganda, Rwanda and adjacent northern Burundi, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, western Kenya and northwestern Tanzania.
  Southern brown-throated weaver Ploceus xanthopterus southern Africa.
Kilombero weaver Ploceus burnieri Tanzania.
  Rüppell's weaver Ploceus galbula Sudan to Somalia and extreme northern Kenya.
  Northern masked weaver Ploceus taeniopterus Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Sudan.
  Lesser masked weaver Ploceus intermedius eastern, south-eastern and southern Africa.
  Southern masked weaver Ploceus velatus southern Africa.
  Katanga masked weaver Ploceus katangae south-eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo and northern Zambia.
Lufira masked weaver Ploceus ruweti Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Tanzanian masked weaver Ploceus reichardi south-western Tanzania and north-eastern Zambia.
  Vitelline masked weaver Ploceus vitellinus western, central and eastern Africa.
  Speke's weaver Ploceus spekei northern and eastern Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, and north-eastern Tanzania
Fox's weaver Ploceus spekeoides Uganda.
  Village weaver Ploceus cucullatus Hispaniola, Mauritius and Réunion.
  Giant weaver Ploceus grandis São Tomé Island.
  Vieillot's black weaver Ploceus nigerrimus western and central Africa
Weyns's weaver Ploceus weynsi eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo and north-western Tanzania.
Clarke's weaver Ploceus golandi Kenya.
Juba weaver Ploceus dichrocephalus Horn of Africa.
  Black-headed weaver Ploceus melanocephalus West, Central, and East Africa
  Golden-backed weaver Ploceus jacksoni Burundi, Kenya, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda.
Cinnamon weaver Ploceus badius Sudan and South Sudan
  Chestnut weaver Ploceus rubiginosus eastern and south-western Africa.
Golden-naped weaver Ploceus aureonucha northeastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.
  Yellow-mantled weaver Ploceus tricolor African tropical rainforest.
  Maxwell's black weaver Ploceus albinucha African tropical rainforest.
  Nelicourvi weaver Ploceus nelicourvi Madagascar
  Sakalava weaver Ploceus sakalava Madagascar.
  Asian golden weaver Ploceus hypoxanthus Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  Compact weaver Ploceus superciliosus Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and Zambia.
  Black-breasted weaver Ploceus benghalensis South Asia
  Streaked weaver Ploceus manyar Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam
  Baya weaver Ploceus philippinus Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia.
  Finn's weaver Ploceus megarhynchus India and Nepal
  Dark-backed weaver Ploceus bicolor Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eswatini, Gabon, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Preuss's weaver Ploceus preussi Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, DRC, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.
Yellow-capped weaver Ploceus dorsomaculatus Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Gabon.
  Olive-headed weaver Ploceus olivaceiceps Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Zambia.
Usambara weaver Ploceus nicolli Tanzania.
  Brown-capped weaver Ploceus insignis Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda.
Bar-winged weaver Ploceus angolensis Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Zambia.
São Tomé weaver Ploceus sanctithomae São Tomé and Príncipe.
Yellow-legged weaver Ploceus flavipes Democratic Republic of the Congo.


  1. ^ Cuvier, Georges (1816). Le Règne animal distribué d'après son organisation : pour servir de base a l'histoire naturelle des animaux et d'introduction a l'anatomie comparée (in French). Volume 1. Paris: Déterville. p. 383. |volume= has extra text (help)
  2. ^ Mayr, Ernst; Greenway, James C. Jr, eds. (1962). Check-list of birds of the world. Volume 15. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 32. |volume= has extra text (help)
  3. ^ Jobling, J.A. (2018). 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 5 May 2018.
  4. ^ De Silva, Thilina N.; Peterson, A. Townsend; Bates, John M.; Fernandoa, Sumudu W.; Girard, Matthew G. (2017). "Phylogenetic relationships of weaverbirds (Aves: Ploceidae): A first robust phylogeny based on mitochondrial and nuclear markers". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 109: 21–32. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2016.12.013. PMID 28012957.
  5. ^ Wolters, H.E. (1970). "On the generic classification of the weaver-birds of the Malimbus-Ploceus group" (PDF). Natural History Bulletin of the Siam Society. 23: 369–391.
  6. ^ Del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Christie, D. (2010). Handbook of the Birds of the World. 15. Weavers to New World Warblers. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions.
  7. ^ Gill, Frank; Donsker, David, eds. (2018). "Old World sparrows, snowfinches, weavers". World Bird List Version 8.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 26 November 2018.

External linksEdit

  •   Media related to Ploceus at Wikimedia Commons
  •   Data related to Ploceus at Wikispecies