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Cape Spurfowl | Pternistis capensis

The Cape Spurfowl is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Phasianidae bird family group which includes birds such as Francolins, Spurfowls, Quails.

The description for the Cape Spurfowl (Latin name Pternistis capensis) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Pternistis capensis can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 195 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 71. You will find a picture of the Cape Spurfowl on page 81.

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 Cape Francolin in the Roberts 6th Edition. The Latin name for this bird is Francolinus capensis in the Roberts 6th Edition.

The Cape Spurfowl is known in Afrikaans as Kaapse Fisant.

The Cape Spurfowl is Endemic to the Southern African Region which means that this bird is only found in this region and nowhere else in the world.

The Cape Spurfowl has a height of 43 cms and weighs around 980 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured black. The Pternistis capensis has a white coloured throat, red 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 black

Legs are red

Throat is white

Back is brown

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 Cape Spurfowl 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 4 to 8 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 bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.

The Cape Spurfowl is found in the Southern African wetlands, riverine forests and moist grasslands.

The bird is at home in riverine forests and close to water bodies such as lakes, dams and streams

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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