Family Starlings (Sturnidae)

Least Concern

Burchell's Starling (Lamprotornis australis)


French: Choucador de Burchell German: Riesenglanzstar Spanish: Estornino de Burchell

Megalopterus australis

A. Smith

, 1836,

country north of Kurrichane, North West Province, South Africa




S Angola S to C & E Namibia, E to SW Zambia, Botswana and adjacent W border of Zimbabwe#R, N South Africa, SW Mozambique and Swaziland.

Descriptive notes

30 cm; 74–138 g. Com­paratively robust with long, graduated tail, and dark eye. Has forehead and crown to mantle and back blue-green, distinct blue-purple sheen on... read more


Song an extended, harsh croaking with pauses between groups of notes; a throaty, musical call given... read more


Open woodland and savanna, avoiding miombo woodland; associated particularly with camelthorn trees... read more

Food and feeding

Diet includes fruit, such as Diospyros mespiliformis, and flowers of Acacia giraffae; also animal food, ranging from... read more


Breeds Mar in Zambia, Jan–Apr in Namibia and Botswana, and Sept–Mar (mostly Oct–Jan) in South Africa. Monogamous. Nest... read more


Presumed resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally common. Wide range in sparsely populated areas; common in some national parks. Population in Kruger National Park, South Africa, estimated at... read more

Recommended citation

Craig, A. & Feare, C. (2019). Burchell's Starling (Lamprotornis australis). 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 6 December 2019).