Columba delegorguei (Eastern bronze-naped pigeon, Delegorgue's pigeon) 

Withalsbosduif [Afrikaans]; Indenga [Xhosa]; iJuba (also applied to Speckled pigeon) [Zulu]; Delegorgue-duif [Dutch]; Pigeon de Delegorgue [French]; Bronzehalstaube, Glanznackentaube [German]; Pombo de Delegorgue [Portuguese]

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Teleostomi (teleost fish) > Osteichthyes (bony fish) > Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) > Stegocephalia (terrestrial vertebrates) > Tetrapoda (four-legged vertebrates) > Reptiliomorpha > Amniota > Reptilia (reptiles) > Romeriida > Diapsida > Archosauromorpha > Archosauria > Dinosauria (dinosaurs) > Saurischia > Theropoda (bipedal predatory dinosaurs) > Coelurosauria > Maniraptora > Aves (birds) > Order: Columbiformes > Family: Columbidae > Genus: Columba

Columba delegorguei (Eastern bronze-naped pigeon, Delegorgue's pigeon)   

Eastern bronze-naped pigeon, Castle Forest Lodge, Mt Kenya, Kenya. [photo Megan Perkins ]


Distribution and habitat

It has two separate populations; one in Tanzania and Kenya and the other in southern Africa. Here it is uncommon in central Mozambique and the east of KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape. It generally prefers the canopy of lowland and riverine forest and dense woodland, also moving into thick bush, alien pine (Pinus) plantations and gardens.

Distribution of Eastern bronze-naped pigeon in southern Africa, based on statistical smoothing of the records from first SA Bird Atlas Project ( 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). See here for the latest distribution from the SABAP2.  

Movements and migrations

Largely resident and locally nomadic, moving response to the availability of fruiting trees.


Mainly eats fruit, doing most foraging in the early morning and evening in the tree canopy. The following food items have been recorded in its diet:

  • Plants
    • fruit
      • Podocarpus latifolius (Broad-leaved yellowwood)
      • Trema orientalis (Pigeonwood)
      • Macaranga capensis (River macaranga)
      • Cassipourea malosana (Sand onionwood)
      • Halleria lucida (Tree fuchsia)
      • Helixanthera woodii (Wood's dainty mistletoe)
      • Ficus (wild figs)
      • Rhipsalis baccifera (Hanging wild cactus)
      • Zanthoxylum davyi (Forest knobwood)
    • seeds
    • flowers


  • Little known in southern Africa; the female builds the nest with material provided by the male, consisting of a flimsy platform of twigs, typically placed in the upper branches of the tree canopy.
  • Only one nest has been observed in southern Africa - in this case it laid two eggs in December, which were incubated by both sexes.
  • The chicks are fed by both parents.


Vulnerable in South Africa, as it is threatened by the fragmentation of forests, clearing of forest patches for grazing by cattle and the use of understorey plants for medicinal purposes.


  • 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. 




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