Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

African Piculet (Verreauxia africana)


Taxonomy

French: Picumne de Verreaux German: Graubauch-Mausspecht Spanish: Carpinterito africano
Taxonomy:

Sasia africana

J. P. Verreaux and J. B. É. Verreaux

, 1855,

Gabon

.

Differs from all other picids in having only eight (rather than ten) rectrices. Fairly close to Sasia. Monotypic.

Distribution:

S Cameroon and SW Central African Republic E to SW Uganda (Bwamba Forest), S to NW Angola (S to Cuanza Norte, N Lunda Norte) and SC & SW DRCongo; a few isolated records in recent decades from Liberia, Ivory Coast and Ghana indicate existence of small population in forests of Upper Guinea#R#R#R.

Descriptive notes

9–10 cm; 7–10·5 g. The only African piculet; appearance might initially recall a crombec (Sylvietta). Male has chestnut to rufous forehead, olive-... read more

Voice

Weak high trill, “ti-ti-ti-ti-ti-ti” or piercing, sunbird-like “see-see-see-see-... read more

Habitat

Inhabits humid forest, mainly in ecotone between primary and secondary growth, also gallery forest... read more

Food and feeding

Principal food made up of wood-boring beetle larvae; also consumes adult beetles and other insects, but appears not to take ants. Commonly... read more

Breeding

Laying dates span Jun–Feb; juvenile collected in Mar in Angola. Nest excavated 1–5 m above ground in narrow branch, entrance 2... read more

Movements

Essentially resident. Several records from Upper Guinea, including two from Liberia, three from... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Locally common, e.g. in parts of Gabon; common in Bwamba Forest in Uganda; not uncommon in Angola. Occurs at Mount Kupé and in... read more

Recommended citation

Winkler, H., Christie, D.A. & Kirwan, G.M. (2017). African Piculet (Verreauxia africana). 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 https://www.hbw.com/node/56150 on 17 December 2017).