Saturday, October 3, 2009

Weaver Profusion

Since there isn't much to report back with regard to our "little chap", the Masked weaver [SEE: previous 4 blog-entries], I'll concentrate today on more members of the weaver family.

Although this looks like another Masked weaver, it's actually a Lesser Masked weaver - the shape of the nest is also a "dead-give-away". These birds are more "concentrated" in the northern parts of our country.

Does the shape of this nest look "familiar" or is there a slight variation to the "entrance"? It's in fact the nest of a Spotted-backed weaver & to be more precise, belonging to the northern "race" with its entirely black head.

By way of a comparison: although this is an immature Spotted-backed weaver, it's clear that it's a member of the southern race mainly found along the eastern (more coastal) parts of our country.

Going even more "coastal", we find the Yellow weaver - distinguishable by its pale all-over-yellow colour BUT its nest is almost identical to that of a Masked weaver! So far I've only "met" this weaver along the St. Lucia estuary (in KwaZulu-Natal).

This is a "closer" look at what a male Yellow weaver looks like - notice the red eyes ...

... because in contrast a Golden weaver has pale eyes - otherwise there isn't much difference between this & the previous family member, except if one compares the shapes of their nests.

With regard to a Cape Weaver the shape of the nest is similar again to the one our "little chap", the Masked weaver, builds.

Now to a nest (& its weaver) that has a totally different shape & look - belonging to a Thick-billed weaver.

And this is what a Thick-billed weaver male looks like. These birds are found in the more eastern (also more coastal) regions of our country.

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