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Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark | Eremopterix leucotis

The Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Alaudidae bird family group which includes birds such as Larks, Sparrowlarks.

The description for the Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark (Latin name Eremopterix leucotis) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Eremopterix leucotis can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 515 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 887. You will find a picture of the Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark on page 913.

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.

This bird is known as Chestnut-backed Finchlark in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark is known in Afrikaans as Rooiruglewerik.

The Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark has a height of 13 cms and weighs around 22 gms. The head is coloured black while the bill is coloured brown. The Eremopterix leucotis has a chestnut coloured throat, grey legs and a chestnut coloured back. The eyes are brown.

The male Eremopterix leucotis 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 black

Eyes are brown

Bill is brown

Legs are grey

Throat is chestnut

Back is chestnut

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

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 Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark 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 1 to 3 eggs and they are coloured brown.

The bird builds its nest on the ground with figs, straw and leaves. The nest is placed under a bush to protect the young from predators.

The Chestnut-backed Sparrowlark 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 ...

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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