Treron calvus (African green-pigeon, Green pigeon) 

[= Treron calva

Papegaaiduif [Afrikaans]; Intendekwane [Xhosa]; iJubantondo [Zulu]; Mpungu huriti [Kwangali]; Huriti [Shona]; Litubantfontfo [Swazi]; Nghwamba [Tsonga]; Leebamoru [Tswana]; Afrikaanse papegaaiduif [Dutch]; Colombar ŕ front nu [French]; Grüne fruchttaube, Grüntaube [German]; Pombo-verde-africano [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: Treron

Treron calvus (African green-pigeon, Green pigeon)

African green-pigeon. [photo Callie de Wet ©]

Treron calvus (African green-pigeon, Green pigeon) 

African green-pigeon feeding on fruit. [photo Tony Faria ©]

The African green-pigeon is found from Senegal to east Africa, extending south to southern Africa, where it is fairly common in a wide variety of habitats. It mainly eats fruit, as well as very small quantities of seeds, flesh and even dry blood! The female builds the nest, using material gathered by the male. The nest is a flat platform of twigs and leaves, placed in the fork of a tree. It lays 1-2 eggs, which are incubated by both sexes, for 13-14 days, with the chicks staying in the nest for 11-13 days.

Distribution and habitat

Occurs across sub-Saharan Africa, extending south to southern Africa, where it is fairly common in northern Namibia, northern and eastern Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland and eastern South Africa. It occupies a variety of habitats, including closed evergreen forest, high rainfall miombo (Brachystegia) woodland, mixed woodland, coastal dune forest, parks and gardens.

Distribution of African green-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.  

Predators and parasites

Food 

It mainly eats fruit, as well as very small quantities of seeds, flesh and even dry blood! It forages like a parrot, clambering around on slender branches in the canopies of trees, rarely coming coming down to the ground. The following food items have been recorded in its diet:

  • Plants
    • fruit
      • Ficus (wild figs)
        • Ficus bussei (Zambezi fig)
        • Ficus sur (Broom-cluster fig)
        • Ficus elastica (alien Rubber tree)
      • Mystroxylon aethiopicum (Kooboo-berry)
      • Elaeodendron transvaalensis (Bushveld saffron)
      • Diospyros mespiliformis (Jackal-berry)
      • Halleria lucida (Tree-fuchsia)
      • Manilkara discolor (Forest milkberry)
      • Mimusops zeyheri (Red milkwood)
      • Morella (western waxberries)
      • Pappae capensis (Jacket-plum)
      • Podocarpus (yellowwoods)
      • Syzygium cordatum (Waterberry)
      • Melia azedarach (alien Persian lilac)
      • Durantia repens (Forget-me-not bush)
      • Morus (mulberries)
      • cultivated fruit
        • peaches
    • dry seeds
  • Carrion
    • small pieces of flesh
    • dried blood of Tragelaphus angasi (Nyala) carcasses (recorded once in Zimbabwe).
  • Wet and dried mud at water hole.

Breeding

  • The female builds the nest using material gathered by the male, consisting of a flat platform of twigs and leaves, typically placed in the fork of a tree. Of 63 nests located, 3 were in riverine woodland, 12 were in suburban gardens and 48 were in woodlands, such as miombo (Brachystegia), Acacia and Mopane (Colospermum mopane).
Treron calvus (African green-pigeon, Green pigeon)  

African green pigeon at its nest, Modimolle, South Africa. [photo Warwick Tarboton ©]

 
  • Egg-laying season is mainly August-January.
  • It lays 1-2 eggs, which are incubated by both sexes for about 13-14 days.
  • The chicks stay in the nest for 11-13 days.

Threats

Not threatened, in fact quite common across southern Africa. It has adapted very well to living with humans, as it often nests and roosts in buildings.

References

  • 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. 

 

 

 Contact us if you can contribute information or images to improve this page.

Birds home   Biodiversity Explorer home   Iziko home   Search