Birds of Africa. Descriptions, names and characteristics of birds in Africa

Africa has a great variety of birds. There are about 90 families in it, which make up 22 squads. This is in addition to those birds that fly to the African continent for wintering from Asian and European countries.

Such a great diversity of living creatures on the black continent is observed, despite the severity of climatic conditions, sometimes accompanied by unbearable heat and drought.

Naturally, the first bird that comes to mind when people mention Africa is the ostrich. Thanks to the evolution of this largest terrestrial bird, it is possible to survive in the arid territories of the deserts of Africa without any problems.

Many spectacled penguins are found on the coastal territory of the southern continental part of Africa. And on the reservoirs there are large settlements birds of Africa, which belong to the order of "grebe-like" with the same name toadstools and chomga. In these arid climatic conditions, there are 19 species of birds belonging to the heron group. Among them, the largest heron is a whale whale, reaching a size of 1.4 m.

Story about birds living in Africa you can go on forever, but it’s better to stop and talk in more detail about some of the most interesting specimens.


Weavers are the most common birds of the savannah of Africa. They begin to nest with the beginning of the first rains in the savannah. In dry periods, these birds very much resemble tousled and nondescript sparrows and fly in packs.

But with the arrival of rains, everything changes dramatically. Male weavers wear colorful outfits most often in rich red-black or yellow-black tones. Flocks of birds during the breeding season crumble, they form pairs.

When a male flirts with a female, its bright feathers resemble a lightning that has stopped on a tree. They ruffle their colorful feathers and thus visually become much larger.

Tall grass near wetlands are the favorite places of these wonderful birds. Each male with utmost zeal guards his territory, letting only his females onto it, who must lay eggs.

Pictured bird weaver

Yellow-billed Toko

This amazing bird also lives in the savannah and belongs to the birds of the rhinoceros genus. Their hallmark is the huge beaks. At first glance it seems that this massive beak is heavy. In fact, this is not so because it consists of spongy bone.

Equip their housing Toko in the hollows. Moreover, females with babies remain in these hollows. The male is bricked up with clay entrance to it. At the same time, it leaves only a small hole in order to pass food to them.

This tactic is chosen by birds in order to protect themselves and their offspring from possible enemies. The female for this entire period is greatly recovering. Locals consider it a great delicacy. These birds are omnivores. In difficult times, they do not disdain carrion.

In the photo, the bird is yellow-billed Toko

African marabou

These birds of south africa relate to storks. What distinguishes them from storks is their huge beak, whose width at the base is the same as the head of a bird. Like many birds similar to them, their heads are not feathered, but covered with a liquid fluff.

The head color of the birds is red, their neck is blue. A pink bag is visible on the neck, which does not look very attractive. A marabou lays its massive beak on it.

The bird's view, quite frankly, is not at all attractive. It gives only a little elegance to the collar of white feathers around the neck. In order to look for prey for itself, the bird has to soar up and soar until something catches your eye.

With its powerful beak, a bird can easily manage to tear even the skin of a buffalo. It is interesting to observe the process of eating marabou. A tidbit the bird deftly throws up and, having caught, swallows.

Marabou is a frequent guest in garbage dumps, where he finds various garbage for himself. These birds arrange their nests next to the pelicans along the shores of water bodies.

African marabou bird

Secretary Bird

These look beautiful birds of Africa in the photo. This is the only type of secretaries who belong to the squad. African birds of prey. Tall and long-legged birds live in the savannahs of Africa south of the Sahara. Their distinctive feature is the feathers on their heads, which usually hang from them, and when excited, the birds soar upward.

Almost all of his free time, the bird searches for food. The secretary paces the earth and looks for his prey. Lizards, snakes, small animals and locusts are their favorite treat.

With large prey, the secretary gets rid of with the help of kicks and beaks. Their claws differ significantly from the claws of other birds of prey. The secretaries are stupid and wide. Ideal for running, but not for grabbing prey. At night, the secretaries sit on a tree, and there are their nests.

Pictured bird secretary


it birds wintering in Africa. They are the farthest migrants. In order to get from Europe to South Africa, they have to overcome up to 10,000 km. For wintering, storks choose areas of the Sahara.

There are many legends about this bird. The bird is indeed a symbol of kindness and happiness. The myth that storks bring children the most widespread and persistent. It has long been noticed that the inhabitants of the houses in which the storks settle are always happy.

These large birds are very careful. Their appearance has long been familiar to everyone. The bird has tall and slender legs. She has a long neck and an equally long beak. The plumage is most often white with black wings.

But there are black storks. They feed various birds in water bodies and often eat locusts. Currently, these birds are becoming smaller, so they are taken under reliable protection.

In the photo birds storks

Crowned Crane

Crowned or peacock cranes are widespread in tropical Africa. Such an interesting name was given to the birds due to their chic fan-shaped crest.

The bird is distinguished by interesting dances. Cranes dance at the slightest excitement. Any interesting phenomenon forces a bird standing on a sandy surface to dance.

In the process, another bird joins this movement, and then, in this way, it turns out to be a kind of bird disco, in which they sometimes jump upwards by more than 1 meter, spreading wings and lowering limbs, making dancing movements. Sometimes one leg is involved in the dance, sometimes both.

Crowned Crane

Honey indicator

These birds on the planet, there are 13 species. 11 of them can be seen in Africa. Tiny birds whose starling or sparrow size prefer to live in the forest tropics. They do not like big gatherings.

Jumping in splendid isolation on the branches, reminiscent of bluebirds. Various insects are used in food, which are collected from branches and caught in the air. For many honey-hunters, the favorite food is the larvae of bees, honeycombs and honey in them.

They may notice a hollow with honeycombs in a place that is not very accessible to them. Without retreating, they begin to fly next to him. Thus attracting everyone's attention. The breeding season in birds is noticed by everyone in the area.

They begin to drum loudly with their beaks on dried branches, make current flights and shout, sitting on the branches. Honey-diggers are also called nesting parasites. Birds lay their eggs in nests for woodpeckers and warts.

Bird pointer

Song Shrike

Song Shrike is bird of east africa. His beautiful, organ-like voice informs everyone that there is water nearby. Each sound of birds is filled with extraordinary beauty. A slow and deep tempo of melodies is heard over a smoothly flowing river.

Moreover, both birds from a pair take part in singing. One bird turns out to make full, but at the same time soft sounds, which seem quite strong in the vicinity. The second makes her a beat, reminiscent of a flute. And when these two songs are intertwined, something whiter than pleasant is difficult to find.

In the photo, the song shrike

Brilliant starling

In Africa, brilliant prevail from all starlings. By their size, these birds resemble ordinary starlings, only they have a chic color, consisting of green, blue, black, purple, bronze tones decorated with a metallic sheen. They are called so - "bright radiance" or "reflection of sunshine".

In the photo is a brilliant starling


Many people know about this unusually beautiful bird. Her grace and beauty fall in love with her at first sight. The bird belongs to the family of flamingos. Pink flamingo is the only one of all species of these birds that has surprisingly long legs and a neck.

Its feathers are distinguished by their softness and friability. The average height of one adult reaches 130 cm, with an average weight of about 4.5 kg. It feeds on flamingos, insects, worms, small crustaceans, algae and mollusks.

These are nesting birds that build their homes in silt seals. For building materials, birds use a large number of shells, mud and silt. Nests resemble a cone in their shape.

Flamingo bird

African ostrich

It is the largest bird of the African continent. The giant bird is found everywhere in Africa, but most preferably in the deserts and in the open. Ostriches do not like mountains.

African ostrich is considered the largest feathered creature in the world fauna. Its height reaches 3 meters, and sometimes it weighs up to 160 kg. Despite their size, birds can reach high speeds of up to 72 km / h. They love to eat grass, leaves, seeds and fruits.

Birds prefer to stay in small groups. During nesting, the male is grazed with a couple of females. After which one of them remains next to the male and hatches all the eggs. In such collective clutches there can be about 40 eggs.

In the daytime, the dominant female takes care of the eggs; at night, the male replaces her. The chicks that were born are also for some time under the tutelage of the same pair.

Ostrich male is a real brave and dedicated father who guards his little ones with utmost vigilance. If necessary, ostriches attack even without the slightest sense of fear when their chicks are threatened.

African ostrich


It is part of one of the largest flying birds in the world. The male has a body length of 1 meter, with a weight of 16 kg. Sometimes the weight of bustards exceeds 20 kg. These large brown-colored birds nest on the ground. Consumes more vegetable food.

In springtime, the bustard is currented. Feathers are tousled in males; they become rather strange looking, remind huge balls. Among these birds, no pairs form.

The female alone is engaged in the incubation and education of babies. They lay mainly 2 eggs each. For young bustards, insects are their favorite food. The birds mature period late, females mature in 2-4 years, male even later - in 5-6 years.

In the photo, the bustard bird

Buffoon eagle

This majestic bird of prey has a length of 60 cm and a weight of up to 3 kg. Due to its courage and insolence, the eagle attacks mongooses, damans and dwarf antelopes. Practicing theft of children in foxes and jackals. Sometimes eagles take food from flying birds that are stronger than them, thanks to their amazing ability to fly fast.

Their nests are visible on the highest places of trees. Eagles lay only one egg, which they incubate for about 45 days. Chick growth occurs at a slow pace. Only by the fourth month the chicks become winged. Buffoon eagles make beautiful aerobatics. These wonderful skills, flight speed and unsurpassed beauty have long made the bird a symbol of the African sky.

In the photo an eagle buffoon

African peacock

According to its external data, this bird strongly resembles an ordinary peacock, it just does not have such a colorful plumage and a slightly different look at the tail. The color is dominated by green, purple, bronze tones.

The head of the African peacock is decorated with a beautiful tufted tuft. The tail of the bird is decorated in green, black, blue and dark green tones. The beak of the bird is bluish-gray.

They prefer to live at an altitude of 350-1500 meters. To hatch eggs, peacocks choose high stumps, crevices of broken trunks, mossy fork in the branches. In the treasure there are from 2 to 4 eggs. The female is engaged in hatching. The male at this time is engaged in the protection of the nest. The incubation period lasts 25-27 days.

African peacock


Many bird names of Africa in the literal sense, depend on the nature of their occupation. This also applies to a small bright bird nectaria. They live in the forests of the African tropics. Like hummingbirds, nectaries can hang in the air.

They do this with a flower in its beak, from which nectar is sucked in flight. Such a focus in birds is obtained thanks to the beak, which cannot be confused with anyone else. Unique in all these birds are a real decoration of the African continent.

Nectary bird

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