French: Combassou violacé German: Purpurwitwe Spanish: Viuda purpúrea
Useguha, east Tanzania
Kenya, N & E Tanzania, SE DRCongo, SW Angola, S & E Zambia, Malawi, W Mozambique, N Namibia, N & E Botswana, Zimbabwe, and N South Africa (NE North West Province, Limpopo and Mpumalanga lowveld); recent single record from S Ethiopia#R.
10–11 cm; 11·5-15·5 g. Male breeding is black with purplish or bluish-purple gloss (gloss dull, even when plumage fresh), concealed white flank spot; tail dark brown,... read more
Chattering and churring songs like those of other indigobird species, mixed with imitations of... read more
Grassy, brushy woodlands, thornbush and riverine habitats. Roosts in dense leafy trees in mixed-... read more
Food and feeding
Small grass seeds, taken from ground. In Zambia, takes seeds of annual grasses Echinochloa colonum, Setaria, ... read more
Season (based mainly on oviduct eggs) Jun in Kenya, Feb–May (some males in breeding plumage into Jul) in Zambia, Apr in Botswana, Jan... read more
Resident. Perhaps locally nomadic in non-breeding season.
Status and conservation
Not globally threatened. Locally fairly common. Often confused with V. funerea in earlier literature. Ringed female active within area of 10 km2. In 1973–1976... read more
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