Green Twinspot

Mandingoa nitidula

The beautiful little Green Twinspot, a tiny member of the finch family that is only 11cm long and 10g in weight, is easily overlooked in its forest habitat where it feeds mainly on seeds. They’ll also readily venture into plantations and gardens where there are grass seeds to be had. When disturbed they always fly high into the tree canopy to wait there quietly until the threat has passed.

Green Twinspots are often seen in small family groups of up to 10, though they form monogamous pairs in the breeding season (and sometimes for more than one season), which spans the months of spring and summer. Their nest is a rough ball of plant material with a side entrance usually built quite high among dense foliage in which both partners roost together at night. The female lies between 4 and 6 eggs and both parents incubate the clutch for a period of 2 weeks. The chicks fledge at about 3 weeks of age but will keep coming back to the nest for about another week or so before becoming totally independent.

According to the IUCN, the Green Twinspot is of least concern, despite occasionally being trapped for the pet trade. It has a very patchy distribution over much of sub-Saharan Africa, while in our country they’re largely restricted to coastal Kwazulu-Natal and the escarpment of Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

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20 thoughts on “Green Twinspot

  1. wetanddustyroads

    So, jy se die Afrikaanse naam is ‘Groenkolpensie’ … sy pensie lyk egter vir my meer gespikkeld 😉. Ek wonder of daar nie party (menslike) ouers is wat wens hulle kinders was meer soos die Groenkolpensie se kinders … na net 3 weke is hulle totaal onafhanklik!

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