Family Starlings (Sturnidae)

Least Concern

Black-bellied Starling (Notopholia corusca)


French: Choucador à ventre noir German: Schwarzbauch-Glanzstar Spanish: Estornino ventrinegro
Other common names: Black-bellied Glossy Starling

L[amprotornis]. corrusca

[sic] Nordmann

, 1835,

Southern Africa = Eastern Cape, South Africa


Original spelling is incorrect Latin and must be emended#R. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • N. c. corusca (Nordmann, 1835) – S Somalia S in narrow belt along coast to Kenya, Tanzania, Mozambique and E South Africa, extending inland along some major rivers (thus reaches extreme SE Zimbabwe); also on Inhaca I, Mafia I and Zanzibar#R.
  • N. c. vaughani (Bannerman, 1926) – Pemba I, off NE Tanzania.
  • Descriptive notes

    18 cm; 51–68 g. Rather small and short-tailed, dark starling. Male nominate race has crown, nape and mantle glossy dark green, some iridescent blue on ear-coverts; back... read more


    Song a sustained jumble of trilling and piping notes, harsher and less musical than that of ... read more


    Coastal forest and dense vegetation, in E Usambaras (Tanzania) primarily on forest edge or... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet primarily fruit, also nectar, also insects and other small animals. Many fruits taken: Ficus, Clerodendron myricoides... read more


    Season Oct–Jan throughout range, with occasional breeding records in other months. Monogamous. Nest a lining of grass, hair, feathers... read more


    Presumed resident on Pemba (race vaughani); birds on Zanzibar not distinct, implying... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Locally common, and abundant in some areas. Wide-ranging. Estimated population exceeding 10,000 individuals in C & S Mozambique. Possibly only a... read more

    Recommended citation

    Craig, A. & Feare, C. (2020). Black-bellied Starling (Notopholia corusca). 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 25 February 2020).