Whyte's Barbet

Introduction: Whyte's barbet (Stactolaema whytii) is named after Alexandra Whyte (1834-1905) a government naturalist. Stactolaema (Greek) refers to drip-like marks on the throat. They prefer a habitat associated with plenty of wild fig trees. These barbets occur in small groups of between 3 and 8, concentrating near water in the dry season. They roost in groups of around 12 in a single nest cavity usually above the canopy of a dead branch.

Distribution: The wild fig trees of Namutoni in Etosha National Park.

Diet: Fruit eaters especially wild figs, Kalahari raisin, mulberries, guavas and avocados. They also eat insects and take nectar.

Description: Medium sized barbets with heavy bill. Overall colour of brown to dark brown, pale grey-black to black legs and feet and dark brown eyes. They are the quietest barbet of them all, being resident of large patches of woodland.

Breeding: Usually 4 or 5 eggs are laid from September to January in a tree nest chamber excavated in a hole in a dead branch. Nestling periods for juveniles are around 49 days.

Size: 19cm.

Weight: 50 to 55g.

Birds of Namibia Wildlife of Namibia

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