Saturday, 5 July 2014

Siffling cisticola

Cisticola brachypterus

Photo by David Beadle (Internet Bird Collection)

Common name:
siffling cisticola (en); fuinha-de-asa-curta (pt); cisticole à ailes courtes (fr); cistícola alicorto (es); kurzflügel-zistensänger (de)

Taxonomy:
Order Passeriformes
Family Cisticolidae

Range:
This species is found in sub-Saharan Africa, from Senegal to Ethiopia and south to Angola, Zambia and southern Mozambique. They are mostly absent from the Congo river basin.

Size:
These birds are 10-11 cm long and weigh 6-11 g.

Habitat:
The siffling cisticola is mostly found in dry savannas and woodlands, particularly miombo Brachystegia, but also uses scrublands, moist tropical forests, vegetation along drainage lines and marshes, and edges of cultivated areas.

Diet:
They forage on the ground or in grass tufts, mainly taking insects such as termites, grasshoppers, beetles and bugs.

Breeding:
Siffling cisticolas breed in November-April. The nest is a compact sphere with a side entrance, made of dry grass and leaves reinforced with spider webs. It is typically placed very near the ground in a grass tuft or small scrub. The female lays 2-4 eggs, which she incubates alone for about 14 days. the chicks fledge about 17 days after hatching.

Conservation:
IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and, although the global population size has not been quantified, it is described as locally common. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

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