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The Wilderness Society

Observing purple-banded sunbirds

Written by: Daniel Dolpire 

These are a few of the photos of the purple-banded sunbirds that I took in KwaZulu Natal. I spent over four hours observing the pair feeding their two chicks in an acacia tree. 

Purple-banded-sunbird-chick

The first photos are of the male and female feeding the chicks and then the sequence of the female feeding and removal of faecal sac follow.

Purple-banded-sunbird-insect-babies Purple-banded-sunbird-Acacia-tree Sunbird-KwaZulu_natal

What was really interesting was that the female was the only one that removed the faecal sac. The male did not assist with this task.

Purple-banded-sunbird-tree-nest-female Sunbird-maggot-chick Purple-banded-sunbird-worm-nest

After photographing the sunbirds I went back upstairs to the deck to have lunch. While we were having our lunch vervet monkeys appeared. When we returned to the nest it had been destroyed and the chicks were missing.  The sad part for me was that the chicks were only a couple of days away from fledging the nest.

Sunbird-nest-monkeys

I was later told by friends that the sunbird pair repaired the nest the very next day in the same tree and were ready to start all over again!

All in all an interesting observation.

Purple-banded-sunbird

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