Yellow-bellied eremomela

Yellow-bellied eremomela
Eremomela icteropygialis

Photo by Volker Sthamer (Bird Forum)

Common name:
yellow-bellied eremomela (en); eremomela-de-barriga-amarela (pt); érémomèle à croupion jaune (fr); eremomela de vientre amarillo (es); gelbbauch-eremomela (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Sylviidae

This species is widely distributed in sub-Saharan Africa, occurring in two main populations. One stretches across the Sahel from Mauritania to Sudan and the other is found from Ethiopia, through Tanzania, D.R. Congo and Zambia and into South Africa.

These birds are 10 cm long and weigh around 9 g.

The yellow-bellied eremomela is mostly found in dry scrublands and savannas, especially Acacia woodlands, but also in springs and oasis within arid areas, rural gardens and arable land. They can be found from sea level up to an altitude of 1.900 m.

They mostly eat insects and other invertebrates, namely bugs, beetles, caterpillars, ants and termites, but will also take fruits, seeds and nectar.

Yellow-bellied eremomelas are monogamous and pair for life. The breed in August-January and the nest is a tidy, thin-walled cup, made of stringy plant fibres, dry grass, spider webs and plant down. It is typically placed between lengthwise twigs on the edge of the foliage of a scrub or sapling. The female lays 2-4 white eggs, which are incubated by both sexes for 13-14 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 15-16 days after hatching, but remain with the parents for another 2 weeks.

IUCN status – LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and is described as common to fairly common. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

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