Friday, December 27, 2013

Cape Weaver

Cape Weaver by andiwolfe
Cape Weaver, a photo by andiwolfe on Flickr.
One of my favorite groups of birds in South Africa are the weavers. There are several species, and each one produces an unique style of nests.

This past field season I learned a bit about the behavior of the weavers. The males make several nests to try to attract a female. She will inspect each nest, and if she rejects them all, the male will start the process again. He's very territorial and will do some interesting display behaviors to announce his territory. I don't think these mating pairs are monogamous, which is not surprising given the colonial nesting behavior. Trees are chock full of nests and, from a distance, look like Christmas ornaments adorning a tree. They don't look quite so tidy from up close.

Weaver colonies are noisy and busy places. I wouldn't spend a lot of time hanging out under the nests, unless you have an umbrella....

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