oa Journal of East African Natural History - The African Pitta, Pitta angolensis Vieillot

Volume 1969, Issue 118
  • ISSN : 0012-8317



This brilliantly coloured bird is rarely seen. Most of the records are made as the result of it flying into a light at night while on local migrations. As the records are few, the following observation and summary of what Moreau, Praed & Grant have to say may be of interest. An African Pitta was brought to me by the night watchman of the Mwese Hospital, Tanzania at about 8 o'clock in the evening of the 20th November, 1967. The bird had flown against the window of a lighted room. There was a spot of blood at the base of its beak but it was otherwise unhurt. I kept it in a basket overnight and next morning, placed it on open ground and pointed it due north, believing at the time that this was the way it ought to have been going. The bird paused for a moment as if taking its bearings, leaped into the air, swung round and flew off due south with a a low, direct and fast flight.

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