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Square-tailed Drongo | Dicrurus ludwigii

The Square-tailed Drongo is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Dicruridae bird family group which includes birds such as Drongos.

The description for the Square-tailed Drongo (Latin name Dicrurus ludwigii) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Dicrurus ludwigii can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 542 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 683. You will find a picture of the Square-tailed Drongo on page 705.

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.

There have been no changes in the common name between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Square-tailed Drongo between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Square-tailed Drongo is known in Afrikaans as Kleinbyvanger.

The Square-tailed Drongo has a height of 19 cms and weighs around 30 gms. The head is coloured blue, black while the bill is coloured black. The Dicrurus ludwigii has a blue coloured throat, black legs and a blue, black coloured back. The eyes are red.

The male Dicrurus ludwigii has physical features that are slightly different from the female bird.

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 blue, black

Eyes are red

Bill is black

Legs are black

Throat is blue

Back is blue, black

Feeding Habits ...

The Square-tailed Drongo is usually seen hunting for food within the tree foliage

The Dicrurus ludwigii attacks its prey aerially and feeds on wing or takes the prey to a secluded venue where it is killed, torn into small pieces and eaten

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

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Square-tailed Drongo is a monogamous bird which means that the bird finds and breeds with one partner for the rest of its life. The bird lays between 2 to 4 eggs and they are coloured brown.

The nest is built high up in the tree canopy and is protected from predators by branches and the dense green foligae.

The Square-tailed Drongo is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

The bird is found in the African bushveld

This bird is very common in most of the Southern African Forests

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Square-tailed Drongo is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.

This bird is usually seen in small family groups or in large flocks

The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition * edited by PAR Hockey, WRJ Dean and PG Ryan, published by "The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund."

copyright: Tony Roocroft +27-11-454-0105

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