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Black-bellied Bustard | Lissotis melanogaster

The Black-bellied Bustard is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Otididae bird family group which includes birds such as Bustards.

The description for the Black-bellied Bustard (Latin name Lissotis melanogaster) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Lissotis melanogaster can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 238 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 306. You will find a picture of the Black-bellied Bustard on page 304.

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 Black-bellied Korhaan in the Roberts 6th Edition. The Latin name for this bird is Eupodotis melanogaster in the Roberts 6th Edition.

The Black-bellied Bustard is known in Afrikaans as Langbeenkorhaan.

The Black-bellied Bustard has a height of 65 cms and weighs around 1200 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured black. The Lissotis melanogaster has a white coloured throat, yellow legs and a brown coloured back. The eyes are brown.

The male Lissotis melanogaster 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 brown

Eyes are brown

Bill is black

Legs are yellow

Throat is white

Back is brown

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

The diet includes small mammals such as rabbits, field mice and other rodents. Rodents are usually taken from the ground and killed using the sharp claws. The Black-bellied Bustard uses its hard bill to tear up the flesh.

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

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 Black-bellied Bustard 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 Black-bellied Bustard is found in the Southern African wetlands, riverine forests and moist grasslands.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Black-bellied Bustard is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.

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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