Tree Pipit | Anthus trivialis

Robert's Birding Information: Tree Pipit

The Tree Pipit is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Motacillidae bird family group which includes birds such as Wagtails, Longclaws, Pipits.

The description for the Tree Pipit (Latin name Anthus trivialis) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Anthus trivialis can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 722 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 1113. You will find a picture of the Tree Pipit on page 1120.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.

Neither the Latin nor the English name for this bird has been affected by recent nomenclature modifications ? these changes have been incorporated into Robert's 7th Edition where appropriate.

The Tree Pipit has a height of 14 cms and weighs around 22 gms. The head is coloured olive, brown while the bill is coloured brown. The Anthus trivialis has a yellow coloured throat, brown legs and a black, brown coloured back. The eyes are brown.

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is olive, brown.

Eyes are brown.

Bill is brown.

Legs are brown.

Throat is yellow.

Back is black, brown.

Photo's & Differentiating Between Male, Female & Juveniles

Please click the images below to make them larger:

Male Adult  
Female Adult  
Non Breeding Plumage N/A

Tree Pipit Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground.

The Tree Pipit is usually seen hunting for food within the tree foliage.

This bird eats insects such as butterflies, bees, wasps, locusts and ants. These invertebrates are usually hawked aerially, killed and then eaten.

The Anthus trivialis forages mainly on the ground or at the base of trees, and low down in the shrubs eating mostly fruits and seeds.

Tree Pipit Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Tree Pipit is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

The bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.

The bird is an urban dweller as well, being at home in parks, gardens and in old vacated buildings.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Tree Pipit is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.