Identification:

Length 13-15 cm, mass 12-15 g, males larger than females. Male: Black with iridescent emerald-green crown and chin and scarlet throat and upper breast. Bill, legs and feet black, eyes dark brown. Female: Upper parts and face dark brown, eyebrow whitish. Chin and throat dark brown, feathers edged light brown. Breast and belly pale yellow, streaked dark brown.

Habitat:

Broadleaved open woodland, moist thornveld, coastal bush, parks and gardens.

Behaviour:

Often in groups at nectar sources where males frequently chase conspecifics and other Sunbirds. Also hunts insects and spiders, but usually alone. May hover to feed, but usually perches.

Diet:

Nectar, insects and spiders.

Breeding:

The male defends the breeding territory. The nest is pear-shaped with a hood over the entrance hole, and suspended from a branch. It is built by the female using dry grass, stems, leaves and/or bark bound by spider web. Usually two eggs are laid and incubated by the female. Chicks and fledglings are fed by both parents for up to eight weeks.

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