Yellow-crowned Bishop (Euplectes afer)
The Yellow-crowned Bishop
The Yellow-crowned Bishop is patchily distributed in sub-Sahara Africa from Senegal to Ethiopia, south throughout the savanna regions of southern Africa.
In Southern Africa, they occur locally at pan and riverine systems. In the North and North Eastern Namibia, the Okovango basin, Botswana, South East Botswana, in Zimbabwe south to the eastern Highveld areas of South Africa including the lowlands of Lesotho.
The Yellow-crowned Bishop is locally a common bird, captive birds have lived up to 15 years.
The Yellow-crowned Bishop is a resident or a local nomad, they breed when conditions are suitable but may then not occur in the same area for several years. When they are breeding they are closely associated with marshes or seasonally flooded areas, the non-breeding season they sometimes flock in relatively dry areas including cultivated lands.
During the breeding season, they will cluster in small colonies each containing 1 male, the male will defend its territory against Southern Red Bishops.
The male has a Bumble-flight with fluffed plumage directed at both intruding male or female. In courtship, the male will land near the female and adopts a fluffed posture displaying the prominent yellow back and rump feathers.
The male builds 2-3 nests that are 5 -15 meters apart. The oval ball with thin grass strips with a side top entrance. The female lines the nest with fine grass seed-heads, the female will continue to line the nest during incubation.
Eggs are normally laid from December to March.
The Yellow-crowned Bishop joins mixed-species foraging flocks with other bishop, widowbirds, and queleas. They mainly feed on grass seeds with the greatest variety of seeds taken in winter including young maize.
The Yellow-crowned Bishop is a non-threatened species.
Information provided by Roberts Birds of Southern Africa
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