Family Weavers (Ploceidae)

Least Concern

African Golden Weaver (Ploceus subaureus)


French: Tisserin jaune German: Goldweber Spanish: Tejedor dorado africano
Other common names: Eastern Golden Weaver

Ploceus subaureus

A. Smith

, 1839,

Algoa Bay, South Africa


Proposed race tongensis (described from S Mozambique) synonymized with nominate. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. s. aureoflavus A. Smith, 1839 – SE Kenya (S from R Tana), coastal Tanzania (including Zanzibar), E Malawi and N Mozambique; a single record of a male nest-building in S Somalia#R.
  • P. s. subaureus A. Smith, 1839 – C & S Mozambique S along coast to extreme E Swaziland and SE South Africa.
  • Descriptive notes

    15 cm; male 30–39 g, female 22–31 g. Male nominate race breeding has forehead, crown, cheek and ear-­coverts yellow, nape and upperparts green­ish-yellow... read more


    Song an extended, rolling, swizzling sound introduced with short notes "tsip tsip... read more


    Coastal plains, low-lying river valleys and river floodplains; primarily within 50 km of coast, but... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly seeds, including rice (Oryza); also insects, regularly alate termites (Isoptera). Adults also took anthers of Nicotiana... read more


    Breeds Oct–Feb in Malawi; in Mozambique, Apr in C region and Sept–Feb in S; Sept–Feb in South Africa. Probably polygynous... read more


    Presumed resident; possibly irregular breeding visitor to E Swaziland. Of 13 recoveries of ringed... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common. Estimated population in S Mozambique more than 20,000 birds and in C Mozambique at least 2000. Single record from S Somalia,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Craig, A. (2020). African Golden Weaver (Ploceus subaureus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 22 February 2020).