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Violet-eared waxbill

Birds of Namibia

Introduction: Violet-eared waxbills (Granatina granatina) venture into a wide range of shrub thickets and woodland that includes Acacia shrubs and woodland, Kalahari and mopane woodland and open broad-leaved woodland.

Distribution: Fairly common in mid-central and northern ranges, especially in the Kavango River region, Caprivi Strip and Etosha National Park. Absent from the Namib Desert and most of southern Namibia.

Diet: Forages mainly in the morning shade for mainly seeds and some insects. Has been observed taking small caterpillars from the ground beneath Camelthorn trees.

Description: Granatina is a Latin phrase meaning 'a garnet' referring to the violet-purple cheeks and ear coverts.

Breeding: Both male and female build a thick-walled oval ball made from dry grass stems with finer grass materials used to strengthen the inside. From 2 to 7 eggs are laid in most months except September and incubated for around 13 days.

Size: 14cm. Weight: 12g.

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