Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Forest fody

Foudia omissa

Common name:

Order Passeriformes
Family Ploceidae

This species is endemic to Madagascar, being found in the eastern half of the country, from Tsaratanana south to Tolagnaro.

The forest fody is 14 cm long and weighs 15-25 g.

This species is mostly found in intact evergreen rain forest, and occasionally in adjacent secondary growth, from sea level up to an altitude of 2.000 m.

The forest fody is omnivorous, taking seeds, nectar and insects. They are known to eat Sloanea seeds and nectar from the flowers of Strongylodon, Bakerella and Symphonia.

They breed in November-April, with both male and female building the nest on tall grasses, bushes, in trees or on the midribs of palm leaves. The female lays 1-5 eggs, which she incubates alone for 13-17 days. The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge 13-15 days after hatching.

IUCN status - LC (Least concern)
This species has a relatively large breeding range and, although the global population size is yet to be quantified, the species is described as fairly common. The population is suspected to be in decline owing to ongoing habitat destruction and hybridisation with Foudia madagascariensis.

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