Lamprotornis elisabeth (Miombo
Blue-eared starling, Lesser blue-eared starling)
[= Lamprotornis chloropterus]
Klein-blouoorglansspreeu [Afrikaans]; Ndjundju (generic term for
starling) [Kwangali]; Hwirigwiri (generic name for glossy starling) [Shona];
Blauwoor-glansspreeuw [Dutch]; Choucador élisabeth [French]; Messingglanzstar
[German]; Estorninho-pequeno-d'orelha-azul [Portuguese]
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> Family: Sturnidae
> Genus: Lamprotornis
Miombo Blue-eared starling, Kenya. [photo
Distribution and habitat
Occurs in patches from southern Kenya and Tanzania through
Zambia and Malawi to southern Africa. Here it is locally common in Zimbabwe and
north-central Mozambique, marginally extending into the Caprivi Strip, Namibia.
It generally prefers miombo (Brachystegia) woodland in the breeding
season, however in it may move into savanna woodland at other times in the year.
Distribution of Miombo blue-eared starling in southern Africa,
based on statistical smoothing of the records from first SA Bird Atlas
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).
It mainly forages on the ground, eating fruit, nectar and
insects, especially grasshoppers (Orthoptera),
- The nest is a shallow cup set into a pad of leaves or feathers, typically
placed in a tree cavity, either natural or or excavated by
- Egg-laying season peaks from September-March.
- It lays 2-5 pale blue-green eggs, speckled with rusty red and grey.
- Very little is known about the chicks, other than that they are fed by
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.