Weaver news

Another black-crowned Village Weaver

2011-10-11 (153)

Another record and photo of a black-crowned race of Village Weaver, together with several males of the normal yellow-crowned race, was sent by Nikki McCartney. She writes: "Here is another photo of the northern subspecies of the Village Weaver taken at Welgevonden yesterday, Sunday 2 October. It was taken in our garden near the main gate. I have been keeping an eye on the Village Weavers in our garden since we moved into the house and this is the first time I have seen it since we saw it at the beginning of this year at the main gate.
Do you think this is a vagrant male or just a local who has an aberration in his plumage?"

Several males of the black-crowned race of Village Weaver have been reported in South Africa. Nikki's husband, Shaun, reported a record also from Welgevonden Game Reserve in Limpopo Province - see here - this news item has links to some earlier published references. The same individual may be involved at Welgevonden.

It is difficult to know the reason for the black crowns of a few birds in the population, without having genetic material. It is possible, but unlikely, that these birds wandered from Zimbabwe. It is more likely that these birds have genetic aberrations. Please look out for more examples of the black-crowned race of Village Weaver in South Africa, and email me a photo with date and gps locality if you find one, as this may help solve the source of these birds.