Collared Sunbird

Hedydipna collaris

Primarily a bird of forest and riparian habitats where it feeds on nectar, fruit and insects, the tiny (8g, 10cm) Collared Sunbird has exquisite, iridescent plumage, especially in the male of the species.

Collared Sunbirds breed mainly during spring and summer, when the female uses dry grass and other fine plant material to position an untidy oval nest with a side entrance in the outer branches of a tree or shrub, often near the hives of bees or wasps. The female is also solely responsible for the incubation of the clutch of 1-4 eggs over a two week period. The male doesn’t take an active role in the feeding of the chicks, which become independent at around 4 weeks old, either.

The Collared Sunbird is listed as being of least concern by the IUCN, although the loss of coastal forest habitats to development is cause for concern. It occurs widely over the more densely vegetated areas of sub-Saharan Africa, and in South Africa occurs along the coast and adjacent interior of the Eastern Cape and Kwazulu-Natal through to the Lowveld and Escarpment of Mpumalanga and Limpopo.


46 thoughts on “Collared Sunbird

      1. naturebackin

        The Southern Double-collared and the Amethyst. Strangely, as I write this a pair of Collared Sunbirds in the company of an Amethyst start calling loudly in an aloe outside the window! Refusing to be overlooked!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. John

    Such a beautiful bird!! When I see it ate it looks like a hummingbird but with a very short beak. The nectar most be some extra good for this bird because theirs beak is so much shorter then the hummingbird.😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. de Wets Wild Post author

      The hummingbirds and sunbirds are an excellent example of convergent evolution – form fitting function in nature. Though they are not closely related, both families utilise the same ecological niche in their respective parts of the world, and have evolved to look and act quite similarly!



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