Oenanthe pleschanka (Pied wheatear) 

Bontskaapwagter [Afrikaans]; Bonte tapuit [Dutch]; Traquet pie [French]; Nonnensteinschmätzer [German]; Chasco-dominó [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: Passeriformes > Family: Muscicapidae > Genus: Oenanthe

Oenanthe pleschanka (Pied wheatear)  Oenanthe pleschanka (Pied wheatear) 

Pied wheatear male in breeding plumage, Kuwait. [photo rashed11112 ©]

Pied wheatear male in non-breeding plumage, Kuwait. [photo rashed11112 ©]

Distribution and habitat

It breeds from eastern Europe through to central Asia, heading south in the non-breeding season to south-western Arabia and north-eastern Africa, from Egypt to Somalia and Tanzania. It was once spotted in a fallow sugar cane field at Mtunzini, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa in 1984, which is the only time it has ever been seen in southern Africa. It generally prefers plains with scattered thickets and trees, boulder-strewn mountain slopes, moorland, cliffs, dry cropland, stock pens and villages.


It mainly eats insects, doing most of its foraging from a perch, pouncing prey on the ground or hawking insects aerially. The following food items have been recorded in its diet in Africa:


  • 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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