A nasty little virus and a failure of my internet at home has left me at another deadline with nothing to show for myself. Rather than incur the wrath of Corey and face the shame of a no-show, I thought I’d quickly share some images I got of a striking African bird, the Southern Pied Babbler.

Southern Pied BabblerSouthern Pied Babbler (Turdoides bicolor)

While there as some very attractive members of the family (or families, scientists can’t make up their minds) in Asia, in Africa the babblers tend towards the restrained when it comes to plumage. Not so the Southern Pied Babbler, which as you can see makes a very bold statement. Like others of the genus¬†Turdoides it is also a very social species, found in often noisy groups.

pair of babblers

In Southern Africa this species tends to be found in the drier savannah habitats (but not the driest). I saw this family in the campground I stayed in in Madikwe, a location I look forward to writing about when I’m less under the weather. Until then, take care, and if you don’t mind I’ll crawl back into bed now.

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turdoides bicolor

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Written by Duncan
Duncan Wright is a Wellington-based ornithologist working on the evolution of New Zealand's birds. He's previously poked albatrosses with sticks in Hawaii, provided target practice for gulls in California, chased monkeys up and down hills Uganda, wrestled sharks in the Bahamas and played God with grasshopper genetics in Namibia. He came into studying birds rather later in life, and could quit any time he wants to.