Tag Archives: Chinspot Batis

Chinspot Batis

Batis molitor

The Chinspot Batis is a common inhabitant of savanna and woodland, and more recently also orchards and gardens, where it feeds almost exclusively on insects and spiders foraged from among the bark and leaves of trees and shrubs. They avoid forests and exotic plantations.

These very active little birds (adults weigh only about 12g) move around singly or in pairs, often in mixed groups together with other small insectivorous bird species.

Both sexes build the cup-shaped nest of shredded leaves bound together with spider web and camouflaged with lichen in a fork of a (often thorny) tree. Breeding takes place in spring and summer, when 1-4 eggs are incubated by the female for around 18 days. During this time the female rarely leaves the nest as the male supplies her with food. Both parents take care of the chicks, which leave the nest at around 16-18 days old but stay with their parents for another 6-14 weeks. The male defends the pair’s territory year round.

The Chinspot Batis occurs widely from Kenya (in the east) and Angola (in the west) southwards and is listed as being of least concern by the IUCN. In South Africa it can be found from the Eastern Cape, through Kwazulu-Natal, to Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Gauteng and the eastern parts of the North West Province.