oa African Zoology - Preferred habitat of white-browed sparrow-weavers Plocepasser mahali

Volume 24, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-7020
  • E-ISSN: 2224-073X



Habitat use by white-browed sparrow-weavers Plocepasser mahali was studied in the Bloemhof area, South Africa. The habitat of nine sparrow-weaver groups consisted of three vegetation communities: Acacia erioloba community, Nidorella resedifolia community and Conyza bonariensis community. The latter community comprised disturbed, ecotonal areas along the edges of roads and maize lands and had a lower basal cover and higher terrestrial arthropod availability than the other two plant communities. The Conyza bonariensis community, together with areas with little vegetation cover, was well used by sparrow-weavers. Seeds eaten by sparrow-weavers also reflect the open character of feeding areas. Termites are an important sparrow-weaver food taxon and large similarities between the geographical distributions of Trinervitermes trinervoides and sparrow-weavers exist.

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