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Red-billed Firefinch | Lagonosticta senegala

The Red-billed Firefinch is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Estrildidae bird family group which includes birds such as Waxbills, Firefinches, Twinspots.

The description for the Red-billed Firefinch (Latin name Lagonosticta senegala) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Lagonosticta senegala can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 842 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 1061. You will find a picture of the Red-billed Firefinch on page 1056.

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 Engish name for this bird has been affected by recent nomenclature modifications ? these changes have been incorporated into Robert's 7th Edition where appropriate.

The Red-billed Firefinch is known in Afrikaans as Rooibekvuurvinkie.

The Red-billed Firefinch has a height of 10 cms and weighs around 10 gms. The head is coloured red, pink while the bill is coloured black. The Lagonosticta senegala has a red, brown coloured throat, pink legs and a pink, red coloured back. The eyes are red.

The male Lagonosticta senegala 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 red, pink

Eyes are red

Bill is black

Legs are pink

Throat is red, brown

Back is pink, red

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

The Red-billed Firefinch 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 .

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Red-billed Firefinch 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 6 eggs and they are coloured white.

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

The Red-billed Firefinch 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 at home in riverine forests and close to water bodies such as lakes, dams and streams

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

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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