Greater Honeygijide

Although unspectacular in appearance, with dull plumage, the honeyguides arc unique among birds in their ability to digest wax. This species occurs in open forest or mixed trees and hushes. Resembling a songbird in size and shape, it feeds mainly on insects but also adopts a specialized strategy to procure wax. When it has located a bees' nest it leads a human, honeybadger, baboon, or mongoose to the nest with chattering calls and short flights, waits for it to be opened, and later feeds on the wax and brood. It does not rear its own young but lays an egg in the nest of another bird species. The newly hatched honeyguide has temporary, sharp hooks on the tip of its bill for killing the nestlings of the host.

• NKST This bird parasitizes other species' nests. A single egg is laid in the nest of an insect-eating bird.

• DlSTRIBl JTION Parts of Africa, from Senegal to the Cape.

• tail is normally square-tipped


• white-edged wing coverts


Plumage Sexcs dif|cr s||K|lt|v

Migration N)in.mij,ran,


Species Eubueco boureierii

glossy red head reversed outer toe


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