French: Pic olive German: Goldrückenspecht Spanish: Pito oliváceo
Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Subspecies and Distribution
D. g. ruwenzori
(Sharpe, 1902) – E DRCongo and SW Uganda (Ruwenzoris and Impenetrable Forest), Rwanda and Burundi.
D. g. persimilis
(Neumann, 1933) – Angola, N & SC Zambia and SE DRCongo to N Malawi and SW Tanzania.
D. g. kilimensis
(Neumann, 1926) – Tanzanian highlands: Mt Kilimanjaro, Mt Meru, and mountains of N Pare, Usambara, Uluguru and Udzungwa.
D. g. griseocephalus
(Boddaert, 1783) – extreme S Mozambique (Lebombo Mts) and E & S South Africa (E Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal S along coast to S Western Cape).
20 cm; 33–51 g. Male has red hindcrown and nape feathers often with some fine black subterminal bars, grey bases often evident in worn plumage; rest of head, including... read more
Long, slightly nasal trilled whistle of 3–4 notes, “whee-whee-whee”; “pep... read more
Forest, evergreen thickets and dense woodland, and forest fringing watercourses, in uplands;... read more
Food and feeding
Insects and their larvae, particularly ants, beetles (Scarabaeidae). Occurs singly or in pairs, often in parties of up to 6; frequently... read more
Possibly Apr–Jun in Tanzania; breeds Feb–Sept in Zaire, Jul–Sept in Malawi, May–Jul in Zambia, Sept in Natal and... read more
Resident; possibly some local short-distance or vertical movements.
Status and conservation
Not globally threatened. Variably common to uncommon in most of range, but local to scarce in Tanzania; uncommon in Angola; generally common in South Africa. Densities vary... read more
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