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Scaly-throated Honeyguide | Indicator variegatus

The Scaly-throated Honeyguide is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Indicatoridae bird family group which includes birds such as Honeyguides.

The description for the Scaly-throated Honeyguide (Latin name Indicator variegatus) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Indicator variegatus can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 475 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 122. You will find a picture of the Scaly-throated Honeyguide on page 144.

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 Scaly-throated Honeyguide between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Scaly-throated Honeyguide is known in Afrikaans as Gevlekte Heuningwyser.

The Scaly-throated Honeyguide has a height of 19 cms and weighs around 48 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured pink. The Indicator variegatus has a white coloured throat, green legs and a 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 brown

Eyes are brown

Bill is pink

Legs are green

Throat is white

Back is brown

Feeding Habits ...

The Indicator variegatus 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 .

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

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Scaly-throated Honeyguide does not built its own nest but rather invades the nest of other birds. If the bird does not find an empty nest it will attack the host (original nest owner) and displace it

The Scaly-throated Honeyguide is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

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

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 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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