Shaft-tailed Whydah (Vidua regia)

male Shaft-tailed Whydah

male Shaft-tailed Whydah

The Shaft-tailed Whydah (Vidua regia) or Queen Whydah is a small bird occurring in the grasslands of southern Africa (mainly southern Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, northern South Africa, and southern Mozambique). During breeding time, the males are very conspicuous with their bright yellow plumage and long black tail feathers. The birds are brood parasites laying their eggs in nests of other birds (especially those of the Violet-eared Waxbill). Their diet consists largely of seeds. I have photographed these interesting birds during a journey through Namibia in February 2007. Although they are quite common throughout the country, their nervous hopping from branch to branch didn’t let me take particularly good photographs. I would love to try my luck again, but unfortunately no plans for another holiday in Africa are taking shape at the moment.

male and female Shaft-tailed Whydah

male and female Shaft-tailed Whydah

male Shaft-tailed Whydah

male Shaft-tailed Whydah

male and female whydahs among other birds

male and female whydahs among other birds

8 responses to “Shaft-tailed Whydah (Vidua regia)

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