Scientific Name: Canis mesomelas
Tour: Addo Elephant Park Tour, Mountain Tour, Addo River Safari
It generally prefers fynbos and Karoo shrubland, woodland, Afromontane forest, gardens and Eucalyptus plantations.
Endemic to southern Africa, occurring from the far south of Namibia to South Africa, with the bulk of its population centered around the Western Cape extending east and north to KwaZulu-Natal, Swaziland, Mpumalanga and Limpopo Province.
It mainly feeds on nectar, supplemented with athropods, gleaning prey from vegetation and spider webs and hawking insects aerially.
- The nest is built solely by the female in about 25-30 days, consisting of an oval-shaped structure with a side entrance, built of grass, strands of Old man’s beard (Galium tomentosum), rootlets and twigs strongly secured together with spider web. There are exceptions though, as some nests (especially in forests) can be constructed entirely out of old-man’s-beard (Usnea barbata). It often decorates it with the fluffy seeds of Karoo rosemaries (Eriocephalus) rarely along with bits of plastic, paper, string or spider cocoons, while the interior is usually lined with wool, plant down, feathers, fine bark shreds and soft grass seeds. It is typically attached to a branch or incorporated into the foliage of a bush or tree, occasionally in a mass of thorns or in a tent caterpillar nest.
- Egg-laying season is almost year-round, peaking from July-September.
- It lays 1-3 eggs, which are incubated solely by the female for about 13-16 days.
- The chicks are fed by both adults, leaving the nest after about 15-19 days, after which they continue to roost in the nest for about a week. The parents feed them until they are about 42-46 days old, at which point the young become fully independent.