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White-crowned Lapwing | Vanellus albiceps

The White-crowned Lapwing is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Charadriidae bird family group which includes birds such as Plovers, Lapwings.

The description for the White-crowned Lapwing (Latin name Vanellus albiceps) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Vanellus albiceps can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 259 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 411. You will find a picture of the White-crowned Lapwing on page 385.

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 White-crowned Plover in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the White-crowned Lapwing between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The White-crowned Lapwing has a height of 32 cms and weighs around 200 gms. The head is coloured grey while the bill is coloured yellow. The Vanellus albiceps has a grey coloured throat, yellow legs and a grey coloured back. The eyes are yellow.

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 grey

Eyes are yellow

Bill is yellow

Legs are yellow

Throat is grey

Back is grey

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

This bird has a specially adapted bill which helps it hunt for fish, crabs, shrimp and other aquatic animals in the water.

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 White-crowned Lapwing 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 4 eggs and they are coloured cream.

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 White-crowned Lapwing 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 ...

The White-crowned Lapwing is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.

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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