Curiouser and curiouser: Brown-backed Honeybird displays

By |2021-07-05T10:45:32+02:00August 30th, 2015|Birds|

Despite being the epitomy of the term LBJ, Brown-backed Honeybirds are fascinating and curious creatures: brood parasites that can digest waxy scale insects and establish their territories by incredible aerial maneuvers. But there is still a great deal that we don't know about these easily overlooked birds - hopefully my observation on previously undescribed courtship behaviour and calls can contribute one piece to the puzzle.

Sharing is Scaring: mimicry in Black-bellied Starlings

By |2020-05-16T15:20:07+02:00August 29th, 2015|Birds|

If you're a Black-bellied Starling and you want to outcompete your frenemies to hook up with a GF, the most chillaxing way is to do it vocally. Talk the talk, gansta, by copying all the birds you hear around you, obvs. I try my hand at teen slang, and analysis of the vocal repertories of Black-bellied Starlings - possibly Africa's most under-rated mimic. If you're too lazy to read the post, just listen to the audio clip where I isolated mimicked phrases from 11 other species in a 22s recording. Peace!