Common Waxbill (Estrilda astrild)Description
The Common Waxbill is an beautiful little bird. This small bird is typically found in flocks which sometime may be quite large. The tail is also longer than many other waxbills and finches. It is identified by the red bill and eye-stripe and pinkish patch on the belly (the juvenile has a black bill). The Common Waxbill feeds on grass seeds, fruit flies, and small worms. Also known as the St. Helena Waxbill. St. Helena is a small island in the southern Atlantic ocean. Appearance:
Gray-brown upperparts, lower breast, and belly. Fine barring on back, wings, sides, lower breast, belly, and tail. White cheeks, throat, and upper breast. Rosy-pink patch on belly. Bright red mask surrounds eye. Reddish-orange bill. Black undertail coverts. Black legs and feet. Sexes similar. Immature bird is similar to adult, but is duller, has brown undertail coverts, and sometimes lacks red eye mask. 4 inches in length. Habitat:
Open grassland, farmland, cultivated fields, marshes, and grassy clearings in forests. Native to tropical and southern Africa. Nesting:
4-5 white eggs. The eggs have a 13 day incubation period. Fledging occurs in 20 days. The nest is a small globe of woven grass. It is built in a stand of grass or a short, dense shrub.