French: Euplecte à épaules orangées German: Stummelweber Spanish: Obispo de abanico
Eastern Cape, South Africa
Subspecies and Distribution
E. a. bocagei
(Sharpe, 1871) – S & E Mali, SW Niger, NE Nigeria, SW Chad, W & N Cameroon, N Central African Republic, E Congo, W & S DRCongo, Angola, Zambia (except NE), NE Namibia (Caprivi Strip), N Botswana (Okavango region) and extreme NW Zimbabwe (R Zambezi W of Victoria Falls).
E. a. phoeniceus
(Heuglin, 1862) – SE Sudan, South Sudan, Uganda, E DRCongo, Rwanda, Burundi, inland Kenya and Tanzania, S to NE Zambia and N Malawi.
E. a. traversii
(Salvadori, 1888) – highlands of W & S Ethiopia.
E. a. zanzibaricus
(Shelley, 1881) – S Somalia S along coast, including Zanzibar and Pemba I, to S Tanzania.
E. a. axillaris
(A. Smith, 1838) – lowlands of Malawi (except N), C & S Mozambique, Swaziland and E South Africa.
15 cm; male 26–32 g, female 20–25 g. Typical widowbird with medium-length tail. Male nominate race breeding is black except for buff-edged tertials, secondaries... read more
Song, from perch or in flight, a high-pitched, scratchy series of notes combined with sizzling... read more
Tall grassland, often in moist or swampy areas, even reeds and papyrus (Cyperus papyrus);... read more
Food and feeding
Diet mainly grass seeds, such as those of Setaria, Digitaria, Paspalum, Panicum, Polygonum... read more
Breeds Sept–Oct in W Africa, Aug in Sudan, Sept–Oct in Ethiopia and Aug–Oct in Somalia; in all months except Jan,... read more
Mainly resident, with local movements in non-breeding season. Greatest distance moved by a ringed... read more
Status and conservation
Not globally threatened. Widespread, and locally abundant. Estimated population in C & S Mozambique greater than 60,000 individuals.
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