The tiny (11cm, 9g) Jameson’s Firefinch is a bird of dry woodland and savanna, usually with a dense grass component and near water courses (they need ready access to surface water from a reliable source). They feed mainly on grass seeds supplemented with soft-bodied insects, being especially fond of termites.
Usually encountered in pairs or small groups, often in association with other small seed-eating birds, Jameson’s Firefinches are monogamous and may breed throughout the year. Their nests are oval-shaped, with a side-entrance, and built of grass by both partners, usually close to the ground in a dense shrub or grass tuft. The pair take turns at the incubation of the clutch of 2-7 eggs over a 2 week period. The hatchlings leave the nest when they’re almost 3 weeks old and then become independent of their parents within 2 weeks thereafter.
Jameson’s Firefinch is found in the northern provinces of South Africa and beyond our borders to Angola, the Congos, South Sudan and Ethiopia. The IUCN lists it as being of least concern.