African Quailfinch | Ortygospiza atricollis
The African Quailfinch 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 African Quailfinch (Latin name Ortygospiza atricollis) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Ortygospiza atricollis can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 852 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 1040. You will find a picture of the African Quailfinch 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.
This bird is known as Quail Finch in the Roberts 6th Edition.
The African Quailfinch is known in Afrikaans as Gewone Kwartelvinkie.
The African Quailfinch has a height of 10 cms and weighs around 11 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured red. The Ortygospiza atricollis has a white, black coloured throat, pink legs and a brown coloured back. The eyes are orange.
The male Ortygospiza atricollis 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 orange
Bill is red
Legs are pink
Throat is white, black
Back is brown
Feeding Habits ...
This bird forages for food on the ground
The Ortygospiza atricollis 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 African Quailfinch 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 3 to 6 eggs and they are coloured white.
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 African Quailfinch is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.
The bird is found in the arid and semi-arid regions of Southern Africa and it can withstand high day and night temperatures
The bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.
You can see the African Quailfinch bird on coastal regions and on the sea shore where the bird will be foraging with other birds
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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