The weaver bird family

There are 117 living species in the weaver bird family (Ploceidae), excluding the sparrows of genus Passer, see species list here. Read more about the family here.

Latest Weaver Wednesday
Lesser Masked Weaver

PHOWN:
Accepted: 25646
(Uploaded: 25646)

Total nests counted: 8068136

Latest weaver links:
123 Scaly-feathered Finches mating
122 Scaly-feathered Finch in flight
121 White-browed Sparrow-Weaver feeding on moths

Todays weaver type: (see more here)
19 Feb 1933, Ploceus philippinus travancoreensis , Baya Weaver

Latest weaver news

Weaver Wednesday 3 [244] - Range changes [7]: Lesser Masked Weaver

2017-02-15 (767)

gravit8 Weaver Wednesday 3: range changes in S Africa (species text)

Lesser Masked Weaver Ploceus intermedius

map
Lesser Masked Weaver, Range-change map between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-current).
Red, orange and yellow = cells with very large, large, and small relative decreases
Blue, dark green and light green = cells with very large, large and small relative increases.
Cells = quarter-degree grid cells; Only cells with at least 4 checklists in both SABAP1&2 shown. All cells had this species recorded in SABAP1 or in SABAP2 or in both (more about interpretation at Biodiversity Observations 7.62: 1-13).

Lesser Masked Weaver
Lesser Masked Weaver,
figure from Birdpix

Range changes in SA

Range change summary
More 4 lists 30 lists
increases n % n %
Decrease 90 28 54 29
Tiny change 56 17 37 20
Increase 183 55 96 51
Total 329 100 187 100
In South Africa the Lesser Masked Weaver has more grid cells with increases in reporting rate than cells showing decreases, between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-).

The points below match the points on the map above.

Areas with very large increases include:
1. Greater Durban area, and inland, in KwaZulu-Natal.
2. Northwest of Gauteng.
3. Western edge of its range in Northwest Province; the souther grid is Barberspan where it has been regularly ringed over the last few years.

Large decreases appear to have occurred:
4. central Zululand, this decrease may be due to the drought in the region over the last few years.
5. Kruger National Park.

Range changes elsewhere

DR Congo: at Kinshasa, out of range (Punga 2015a).

Weaver Wednesday 3 [243] - Range changes [6]: Spectacled Weaver

2017-02-08 (766)

gravit8 Weaver Wednesday 3: range changes in S Africa (species text)

Spectacled Weaver Ploceus ocularis

map
Spectacled Weaver, Range-change map between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-current).
Red, orange and yellow = cells with very large, large, and small relative decreases
Blue, dark green and light green = cells with very large, large and small relative increases.
Cells = quarter-degree grid cells; Only cells with at least 4 checklists in both SABAP1&2 shown. All cells had this species recorded in SABAP1 or in SABAP2 or in both (more about interpretation at Biodiversity Observations 7.62: 1-13).

Spectacled Weaver
Spectacled Weaver,
figure from Birdpix

Range changes in SA

Range change summary
More 4 lists 30 lists
increases n % n %
Decrease 108 22 37 14
Tiny change 116 23 76 28
Increase 266 54 158 58
Total 490 100 271 100
In South Africa the Spectacled Weaver has more grid cells with increases in reporting rate than cells showing decreases, between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-). Not shown in this map is current SABAP2 distribution which shows that the core of the range of the Spectacled Weaver in South Africa as coastal KwaZulu-Natal; there is good SABAP2 coverage in the Kruger National Park but the Spectacled Weaver occurs at a low reporting rate there.

The points below match the points on the map above.

Areas with very large increases include:
1. Eastern Cape.
2. KwaZulu-Natal.
3a,b,c. The western edge of its range in South Africa (other than the western edge in the Eastern Cape).

Large decreases appear to have occurred:
4. The western edge in the Eastern Cape.

Range changes elsewhere

Equatorial Guinea: at Río Muni, appears to be addition to country list (Demey 2015b).

PHOWN reached 25000 photo records!

2017-02-02 (765)

Male Red-headed Weaver
PHOWN record 25000
Bernardine Altenroxel has uploaded many PHOWN, and other Virtual Museum, photos from around Tzaneen. Yesterday she uploaded this picturesque photo of a male Red-headed Weaver that had started building a new nest, and this submission turned out to be record no. 25000.

Thanks to all participants since every record was a stepping stone to reach this goal!

PHOWN, PHOtos of Weaver Nests, is a Virtual Museum, is a citizen science project of the Animal Demography Unit, to collect and monitor breeding distributions and colony sizes of weaver birds globally. To take part, register and upload records at Virtual Museum (read the "How to" pdf for help).

Take photos of weaver nests anywhere in the world and submit. You can also submit photos that you took a long time ago (if you know the date and place of the nests). If possible, include a nest count, but submit even if you did not count all the nests in a colony. For PHOWN we would like accurate coordinates foe each colony, as far as possible.

See updates and summaries at PHOWN.

Weaver Wednesday 3 [242] - Range changes [5]: Dark-backed Weaver

2017-02-01 (764)

gravit8 Weaver Wednesday 3: range changes in S Africa (species text)

Dark-backed Weaver Ploceus bicolor

map
Dark-backed Weaver, Range-change map between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-current).
Red, orange and yellow = cells with very large, large, and small relative decreases
Blue, dark green and light green = cells with very large, large and small relative increases.
Cells = quarter-degree grid cells; Only cells with at least 4 checklists in both SABAP1&2 shown. All cells had this species recorded in SABAP1 or in SABAP2 or in both (more about interpretation at Biodiversity Observations 7.62: 1-13).

Dark-backed Weaver
Dark-backed Weaver,
figure from Birdpix

Range changes in SA

Range change summary
More 4 lists 30 lists
increases n % n %
Decrease 64 34 35 27
Tiny change 50 27 38 29
Increase 77 41 57 44
Total 191 102 130 100
In South Africa the Dark-backed Weaver has more grid cells with increases in reporting rate than cells showing decreases, between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-), although this is reversed when using 30 checklists for the analysis. The Dark-backed Weaver is still regular in many areas but habitat loss and fragmentation of natural forest may affect the overall population of this species. The points below match the points on the map above.

Areas with very large increases include:
1. range expansion at northern end of its South African range, i.e. in Mpumalanga
2. range expansion at southern end of its range, i.e. around the Eastern Cape/Western Cape border

Large decreases appear to have occurred:
3. low reporting rate and shows decreases in southern KwaZulul-Natal.

Range changes elsewhere

Uganda: 3 seen, first record at Mt Elgon for 100 years (Demey 2011b).
Zimbabwe: range expansion upstream along Zambesi River (Rushforth 2003a).
Zimbabwe: range expansion - Lake Manyame, Harare (Baker 2009a).

Weaver Wednesday 3 [241] - Range changes [4]: Sociable Weaver

2017-01-25 (763)

gravit8 Weaver Wednesday 3: range changes in S Africa (species text)

Scaly-feathered Finch Sporopipes squamifrons

map
Scaly-feathered Finch, Range-change map between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-current).
Red, orange and yellow = cells with very large, large, and small relative decreases
Blue, dark green and light green = cells with very large, large and small relative increases.
Cells = quarter-degree grid cells; Only cells with at least 4 checklists in both SABAP1&2 shown. All cells had this species recorded in SABAP1 or in SABAP2 or in both (more about interpretation at Biodiversity Observations 7.62: 1-13).

Scaly-feathered Finch
Scaly-feathered Finch,
figure from Birdpix

Range changes in SA

Range change summary
More 4 lists 30 lists
increases n % n %
Decrease 206 30 68 41
Tiny change 141 21 38 23
Increase 337 50 61 36
Total 684 100 167 100
In South Africa the Scaly-feathered Finch has more grid cells with increases in reporting rate than cells showing decreases, between SABAP1 (1987-1991) and SABAP2 (2007-), although this is reversed when using 30 checklists for the analysis. The points below match the points on the map above.

Areas with very large increases include:
1. range expansion towards Pafuri (KNP), and breeding
2. range increases around Burgersfort
3. Northern Cape and western Free State show large or very large increases
4. Western parts of the Eastern Cape areas show large or very large increases

Large decreases appear to have occurred:
5. In Gauteng it has a very low reporting rate, probably due to decreases in size of suitable habitat patches
6. Large or very large decreases appear to have occurred over large areas of northern South Africa, probably related to habitat changes.

Range changes elsewhere

Angola: range extends further than mapped in (Fry 2004a) (in prep.). Zimbabwe: range increasing around Bulawayo (Dean 1963a).
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