Environment

Native Birds Of Tanzania

Tanzania has around two dozen endemic bird species, some of the more notable of which are discussed herein.

There is a wide range of different species of birds that are native to the East African nation of Tanzania. Tanzania has a number of native bird species that live in the country, with many of them being endemic to the country. This article will discuss some of these native birds species in the country and what their physical characteristics, habitats and diets are. It will also mention what their current conservation status is and what threats the species face.

Banded Sunbird

The Banded Sunbird, scientific name Anthreptes rubritorques, is a species of sunbird bird in the Nectariniidae Family, which includes closely related sunbirds and spiderhunters. The Banded Sunbird has a dull grey colored underside in contrast with a iridescent green colored upper side, with darker colored wings. The males of the species has a red colored breast-band, while the females have a head that is more of a olive-green color. The species is small, with adults being between 3.34 to 3.54 inches (8.5 to 9 centimeters) in length. There diet is made up of fruits, berries and nectar, although they will also eat small insects. The species is usually found in subtropical and tropical moist lowland forests or montane forests. The species is endemic to the country of Tanzania, meaning it can only be found there. The Banded Sunbird has been listed as being vulnerable by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List since 1994. The species is most threaten by the degradation and complete loss of its habitat due to the land being cleared for agriculture.

Udzungwa Forest Partridge

The Udzungwa Forest Partridge, scientific name Xenoperdix udzungwensis, is a species of partridge bird that is part of the Phasianidae Family, a group of heavy, ground-living birds. They species is mostly a mix of being reddish-brown and grey in color, with some splattering of black. It has yellow colored legs and toes, with a orange-red colored eyebrows and throat and a coral red colored bill. The species is small, only growing to be around 11 inches (29 centimeters) in length. The species mostly eats ants and beetles, as well as the seeds of plants. The species is endemic to the country of Tanzania and is only found in two parts of the Udzungwa highlands as well as on the Chugu hills in the Rubeho Mountains. The Udzungwa Forest Partridge, which was discovered only in 1991, has been listed as being endangered by the IUCN Red List since 2004. The species major threats are from loss and degradation of habitat since it is only found in three locations. The species also faces a major risk of being hunted and snared by humans for food.

Uluguru Bushshrike

The Uluguru Bushshrike, scientific name Malaconotus alius, is a species of bushshrike bird that is part of the Malaconotidae Family of birds. The species is canary-yellow in its lower areas, but the upper part of the bird is a olive color. It has a black colored head and bill, which is also hooked. It is a large bird for its type, as an adult average between being 8.66 to 9.44 inches (22 to 24 centimeters) in length. The species diet consists of large insects and spiders. This species is believed to be endemic to Tanzania, as it has only been found in the Uluguru Mountains, with most of the population living in the Uluguru Nature Reserve. The Uluguru Bushshrike has been listed as being critically endangered by the IUCN Red List since 2006. The species is threatened by the degradation of its habitat and the loss of its habitat that is not part of the Uluguru Nature Reserve. Its habitat in the Uluguru Nature Reserve is still under threat from the loss of trees for firewood and construction materials, invasive bramble species and fires may that spread for nearby farms.

Yellow-Collared Lovebird

The Yellow-collared Lovebird, scientific name Agapornis personatus, is a species of lovebird that is part of the Psittaculidae Family of parrots. The Yellow-Collared Lovebird is mostly a light and dark green colored, with a yellow breast, collar and nape. Its head is black, with a unique contrast of having white rings around its eyes and a brightly red colored beak. The species is a small bird, with adults only being around 5.5 inches (14.5 centimeters) in length. The species diet is primarily made up of eating the seeds from trees and grasses and they sometimes eat fruit. They species is usually found in a lowland savanna or grassland habitat, although they are sometimes also located in inland plateaus and woodlands that have acacia and baobab trees. The species is native to the country of Tanzania, but has also been introduced to the neighboring countries of Kenya and Burundi. The Yellow-collared Lovebird has been listed as a species of least concern by the IUCN Red List since 2004 and has a stable population and a very large habitat range. The species is currently not facing any major threats that would threaten its population, habitat or food source.

Efforts Supporting the Native Birds of Tanzania

There are specific steps that can be taken by those desiring to try and help support these and other native birds that live in Tanzania. One can look into donating money to organizations whose goal is to protect and conserved endangered wildlife and their habitats. Even without money to donate people can educated themselves on these birds and find out what else they can do to help, like using clean energy. People in Tanzania or internationally can help to push to have more national parks and protected areas, and to help push for more protection for already existing areas.

Endemic Birds of TanzaniaScientific Name
Udzungwa Forest Partridge
Xenoperdix udzungwensis
Rubeho Warbler
Scepomycter rubehoensis
Uluguru Bushshrike
Malaconotus alius
Pemba Green Pigeon
Treron pembaensis
Iringa Akalat
Sheppardia lowei
Rufous-Winged Sunbird
Cinnyris rufipennis
Usambara Hyliota
Hyliota usambarae
Lufira Masked Weaver
Ploceus reichardi
Banded Sunbird
Anthreptes rubritorques
Yellow-Collared Lovebird
Agapornis personatus

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