(Black-winged bishop, Fire-crowned bishop)
Roodvoorhoofdwever [Dutch]; Euplecte monseigneur [French]; Feuerweber,
Flammenweber [German]; Cardeal-tecel„o-de-coroa-vermelha [Portuguese]
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Reptilia (reptiles) >
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Coelurosauria > Maniraptora > Aves
Order: Passeriformes > Family: Ploceidae
> Genus: Euplectes
Distribution and habitat
Occurs across much of sub-Saharan Africa, from Senegal to
Ethiopia south through the DRC, Tanzania, Zambia and Angola to southern Africa.
Here it is uncommon to locally common in north-central Mozambique and adjacent
Zimbabwe, generally preferring moist areas within miombo (Brachystegia)
woodland, grassland with scattered bushes and cultivated land, especially rice
Distribution of Black-winged bishop in southern Africa,
based on statistical smoothing of the records from first SA Bird Atlas
Animal Demography unit, University of
Cape Town; smoothing by Birgit Erni and Francesca Little). Colours range
from dark blue (most common) through to yellow (least common).
It mainly eats grass seeds taken from the ground, although
it may occasionally hawk insects from a low perch. The following food items have been recorded
in its diet:
- Grass seeds
- Panicum maximum (Guinea grass)
- green maize
- Polygynous and territorial, meaning that each male usually mates with
multiple females in one breeding season, usually nesting solitarily but
sometimes joining other males to form a loose colony.
- The male often builds 2-4 nests in a breeding season, which consist of
an oval-shaped structure made of woven grass with a large side-top entrance
concealed by a hood of grass inflorescences; once the female approves it she
adds a lining of fine grass. It is typically placed between upright or grass
stems or in coarse vegetation, usually over dry ground.
- Egg-laying season is from January-April, peaking from February-March.
- It lays 2-4 eggs, which are incubated solely by the female for about
12-13 days (recorded in captivity).
- The chicks are fed by the female only, leaving the nest after about
Not threatened, in fact it seems to have benefited from
Hockey PAR, Dean WRJ and Ryan PG 2005. Roberts
- Birds of southern Africa, VIIth ed. The Trustees of the John Voelcker
Bird Book Fund, Cape Town.