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I Dream Africa

I Dream Africa



The Motacillidae are a family of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They include the wagtails, longclaws and pipits. They are slender, ground feeding insectivores of open country. There are 54 species worldwide and 13 species which occur in Namibia.

This is a distinctive pipit of dry country grassland, savanna and shrubland in eastern Africa. It is native to Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda, and has occurred as a vagrant to Oman, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

It is found in open habitats, especially short grassland and cultivation. It builds its cup-shaped nest on the ground and usually lays three eggs. Like other pipits, this species is insectivorous.

The large pipit at 17cm, but is otherwise an undistinguished looking species, faintly streaked grey-brown above and pale below with light breast streaking. It has a strong white supercilium, and dark moustachial stripes. It has long legs and tail, and a long dark bill. Sexes are similar, but juveniles have warmer brown upperparts.

  • Golden Pipit Tmetothylacus tenellus
  • Fuelleborn's Longclaw Macronyx fuellebornii
  • Orange-throated Longclaw Macronyx capensis
  • Rosy-throated Longclaw Macronyx ameliae
  • Striped Pipit Anthus lineiventris
  • Mountain Pipit Anthus hoeschi
  • Kimberley Pipit Anthus pseudosimilis
  • Woodland Pipit Anthus nyassae
  • Plain-backed Pipit Anthus leucophrys
  • Buffy Pipit Anthus vaalensis
  • African Pipit Anthus cinnamomeus
  • Long-billed Pipit Anthus similis
  • Tree Pipit Anthus trivialis
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