Family Herons (Ardeidae)

Least Concern

Dwarf Bittern (Ixobrychus sturmii)


Taxonomy

French: Blongios de Sturm German: Graurückendommel Spanish: Avetorillo plomizo
Taxonomy:

Ardea Sturmii

Wagler

, 1827,

Senegambia

.

Sometimes separated in monospecific genus Ardeirallus. Monotypic.

Distribution:

Sub-Saharan Africa from Senegal to Ethiopia and S (avoiding arid zones) to South Africa.

Descriptive notes

25–30 cm; 142 g (one immature male); wingspan 50 cm. Distinguished from Butorides striata by smaller size, slower flight, pale and heavily streaked underparts... read more

Voice

In advertisement gives a “hoo, hoo, hoo” and a loud croak when disturbed.

Habitat

Wooded areas or bush with dense foliage along margins of freshwater rivers, streams, lakes and... read more

Food and feeding

Insects, including water beetles and especially grasshoppers, and frogs; also small fish, crabs, spiders and snails, with local... read more

Breeding

Season very variable, generally coinciding with rains, but sometimes early in dry season: Sept in Senegal; Aug–Oct in Mali; Jul in... read more

Movements

African migrant, movements related with changes in water level due to seasonal rains. Equatorial... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Widespread, but uncommon to rare throughout extensive range. Locally common during breeding, e.g. in NE Namibia, S Angola. In Malawi... read more

Recommended citation

Martínez-Vilalta, A., Motis, A. & Kirwan, G.M. (2018). Dwarf Bittern (Ixobrychus sturmii). 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/52726 on 13 December 2018).