PHOWN (PHOtos of Weaver Nests)

PHOWN (PHOtos of Weaver Nests) is a citizen science monitoring project aimed at determining the distribution of colonies or nests of all weaver species globally, and studying the variation in their colony sizes. Counting weaver nests and taking photos allows tracking of changes in weaver breeding effort. This project provides an easy way of monitoring common weavers, while helping the conservation of threatened weavers. Download PHOWN flyer here. To take part, read here.

Some uses and analyses of PHOWN data:

Current statistics

Photo of the

Vm 9639
 No. of nestsRecordsSpeciesCountriesParticipants
Total possiblelots!lots!117c 606.9 billion
PHOWN records 124409


71 34 276
Non-photo records 7793101


21 7 14
Total records 7917510


74 34 280

Total stats possible: There are 117 living species of weavers (species list). There are about 60 countries in Africa, Asia and the Indian Ocean where weavers occur naturally. The current world population is about 6.9 billion humans. The number of records that can be submitted is unlimited (not really, but rather many!).

Newest species: Mauritius Fody
Newest country: Mauritius
Newest participant: Spiby Jacky

Annual totals (includes non-photo records):
2010 - 437, 2011 - 1346, 2012 - 3433, 2013 - 3022
Record month: Dec 2012 - 838 PHOWN records

2014 records (includes non photo records):
Jan: 608              
Feb: 377              
Mar: 473              
Apr: 483

Coverage map for all species
Species summary and google map
List VM records per observer
General query
More summaries

PHOWN priorities

Gallery - most recent records

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News items relating to this project

Latest news item:

Weaver Wednesday [97]: Baya Weaver

2014-04-23 (508)

gravit8 Weaver Wednesday

Baya Weaver Baya Weaver

The Baya Weaver Ploceus philippinus is the most common and widespread weaver in Asia. The Baya Weaver breeding male has a bright yellow crown, dark brown mask, blackish bill, the upper parts are dark brown streaked with yellow, with a yellow breast and buff belly. Non-breeding males and females are dull coloured, resembling House Sparrows.

The Baya Weaver occurs eastern Pakistan to Vietnam and western Indonesia (see map below, based on Handbook of the Birds of the World, Vol. 15).

Several subspecies of the Baya Weaver are recognised: Baya Weaver map
P. p. philippinus occurs on the Indus floodplain in Pakistan, most of India, southern Nepal and Sri Lanka (see yellow on map).
P. p. travancoreensis, occurs in SW India from Goa to Travancore (see green on map). The male is darker above and the breast is darker yellow than in the nominate.
P. p. burmanicus occurs in India (West Bengal, Assam), Bhutan, Bangladesh and Myanmar (see purple on map). It is larger than the nominate, the male has a paler face and throat, and buff breast with darker mottling.
P. p. angelorum occurs in Thailand and Laos (see brown on map). This subspecies has a buff breast and black streaking on the upperparts.
P. p. infortunatus occurs in Myanmar to Vietnam, and south to Java and Bali (see light blue on map). This subspecies is more rufous on the upperparts, breast and flanks than in the other races. phown 7009

The Baya Weaver inhabits grassland, scrub with scattered trees, mangroves and cultivated areas. It is generally found in open country near water.

The Baya Weaver feeds on seeds, including those of grass, rice, wheat, maize, sorghum, millet and sunflowers. Insects include grasshoppers, flies, termites, beetles, caterpillars and butterflies. It also feeds on nectar, spiders, small snails, and rice frogs. Rice is often the most important food item. The Baya Weaver occupies midday roosts near the feeding grounds.

The Baya Weaver is polygynous, with 3-5 females per male. It is usually colonial, with up to 60 nests in a single tree and more than 200 in some colonies, but solitary nests may be found. It sometimes breeds in mixed colonies with other weavers. phown 7009

The nest is retort-shaped, and usually with a long entrance tunnel. It is woven by the male from strips of palm, grass or rice-plant leaves. The male builds a ring and then completes the roof, so that the nest resembles a helmet with a chinstrap. Blobs of mud are added to the nest, most probably for reinforcement. The nest is only completed if a female accepts it. The entrance tunnel is built last, often 40-65 cm or more in length. The nest is placed 2-30 m above the ground or water. More than 35 plant species have been used, but Acacias are often favoured. Often colonies are close to human habitation, and are also found on telephone lines. Nests are sometimes associated with wasps or aggressive ants. phown 5189

The eggs, most commonly clutch of 3, are white. The female incubates and feeds the chicks, although some males help feed in later stages. Nest predators include snakes, crows, and probably monkeys. Nest destruction by humans is probably the most important source of loss. Old nests are used by a varity of birds and animals, including Scaly-breasted Munia Lonchura punctulata, Indian Silverbill Euodice malabarica, long-tailed tree mouse Vandeleuria oleracea, and nests abandoned at the helmet stage may be used as roost sites by painted bats Kerivoula picta.

There are ten PHOWN records for the Baya Weaver (see PHOWN summary), but many more are needed of this common species. Submit any weaver nest records to PHOWN (PHOtos of Weaver Nests) via the Virtual Museum upload site.

PHOWN summary           Previous Wedn: Gola Malimbe           Full weaver species list

All news items relating to this project

The headers below refer to Weaver News items featuring PHOWN. Click on a header to see the News item, which includes the full news item. (The number in brackets is the date that the news item appeared on Weaver Watch).

Weaver Wednesday [97]: Baya Weaver (2014-04-23)
First PHOWN records from Mauritius (2014-04-20)
Weaver Wednesday [96]: Gola Malimbe (2014-04-16)
Snakes and weaver nests (2014-04-11)
Weaver Wednesday [95]: Juba Weaver (2014-04-09)
Weaver Wednesday [94]: Fire-fronted Bishop (2014-04-02)
Weaver Wednesday [93]: Preuss's Weaver (2014-03-26)
Madagascar Fodies in the Seychelles (2014-03-21)
Weaver Wednesday [92]: Red-headed Malimbe (2014-03-19)
Chestnut Weaver at Upington (2014-03-18)
Weaver Wednesday [91]: Yellow-capped Weaver (2014-03-12)
Weaver Wednesday [90]: Golden-backed Bishop (2014-03-05)
Weaver Wednesday [89]: Weyns's Weaver (2014-02-26)
Weaver Wednesday [88]: Bates's Weaver (2014-02-19)
Weaver Wednesday [87]: Rodrigues Fody (2014-02-12)
Weaver Wednesday [86]: Giant Weaver (2014-02-04)
Distribution maps for all weavers (2014-01-31)
Weaver Wednesday [85]: Fan-tailed Widowbird (2014-01-29)
Weaver Wednesday [84]: Black-throated Weaver (2014-01-22)
Weaver Wednesday [83]: Bar-winged Weaver (2014-01-15)
Weaver Wednesday [82]: Long-tailed Widowbird (2014-01-08)
Weaver Wednesday [81]: Bannerman's Weaver (2014-01-01)
PHOWN 2013 (2013-12-27)
Weaver Wednesday [80]: Bertram's Weaver (2013-12-25)
Social spiders and sparrow-weavers (2013-12-20)
Weaver Wednesday [79]: Northern Red Bishop (2013-12-17)
Indian Mynas and weavers (2013-12-13)
Weaver Wednesday [78]: Brown-capped Weaver (2013-12-11)
Weaver Wednesday [77]: Finn's Weaver (2013-12-04)
Weaver Wednesday [76]: Cardinal Quelea (2013-11-27)
Southern Masked Weaver - near daily 'blog' (2013-11-22)
Weaver Wednesday [75]: Golden-naped Weaver (2013-11-20)
Breeding seasons of weavers (2013-11-15)
Weaver Wednesday [74]: Northern Brown-throated Weaver (2013-11-13)
Ecology of weaver nests (2013-11-09)
Weaver Wednesday [73]: Yellow Bishop (2013-11-06)
Weaver Wednesday [72]: Tanganyika Masked Weaver (2013-10-30)
Weavers and wasps (2013-10-25)
Weaver Wednesday [71]: Northern Masked Weaver (2013-10-23)
First PHOWN records from Cameroon (2013-10-22)
Turnover of weaver species (2013-10-18)
PHOWNing in Hoedspruit (2013-10-17)
Weaver Wednesday [70]: Madagascar Fody (Red Fody) (2013-10-15)
Tim Neary interviews Dieter about weavers (2013-10-13)
Weaver Wednesday [69]: Heuglin's Masked Weaver (2013-10-09)
Top PHOWNers! (2013-10-08)
Weaver nest sites (2013-10-05)
Weaver Wednesday [68]: Bocage's Weaver (2013-10-02)
Weaver Wednesday [67]: Chestnut-mantled Sparrow-Weaver (2013-09-25)
Weaver Wednesday [66]: Sao Tome Weaver (2013-09-18)
Weaver Wednesday [65]: Black-necked Weaver (2013-09-11)
Weavers and waterbirds (2013-09-08)
Weaver Wednesday [64]: Mauritius Fody (2013-09-04)
Decline of Baya Weavers in Bangladesh (2013-08-30)
Weaver Wednesday [63]: Village Weaver (2013-08-28)
First PHOWN records from Bangladesh (2013-08-25)
Weaver Wednesday [62]: Clarke's Weaver (2013-08-21)
Kgalagadi Sociable Weaver survey (2013-08-16)
Weaver Wednesday [61]: Black Bishop (2013-08-14)
Weaver Wednesday [60]: Black-billed Weaver (2013-08-07)
Weaver Wednesday [59]: Cinnamon Weaver (2013-07-31)
PAPER: Birds using weaver nests (2013-07-29)
PHOWN surveys (2013-07-26)
Weaver Wednesday [58]: Black-winged Bishop (2013-07-24)
PAPER: Predation by Vervet Monkey (2013-07-22)
PHOWNing on elephant back (2013-07-19)
Weaver Wednesday [57]: Loanga Weaver (2013-07-17)
PHOWN caterpillar from Villiers to Harrismith (2013-07-12)
Weaver Wednesday [56]: Principe Golden Weaver (2013-07-10)
Virtual Museum records (2013-07-05)
Weaver Wednesday [55]: Jackson's Widowbird (2013-07-03)
Ruvu Weaver - new species? (2013-06-28)
Weaver Wednesday [54]: Yellow-mantled Weaver (2013-06-26)
Weaver species ranked by mean colony size (2013-06-21)
Weaver Wednesday [53]: Olive-headed Weaver (2013-06-19)
Weaver Wednesday [52]: Red-crowned Malimbe (2013-06-12)
Weaver Wednesday [51]: Orange Weaver (2013-06-05)
History of a Red-headed Weaver pair (2013-06-02)
Weaver Wednesday [50]: Little Weaver (2013-05-29)
Weaver Wednesday [49]: Red-headed Quelea (2013-02-22)
Weaver Wednesday [48]: Vitelline Masked Weaver (2013-05-15)
Buffalo Weavers and Baobabs (2013-05-10)
Weaver Wednesday [47]: Golden-backed Weaver (2013-05-08)
Weaver Wednesday [46]: Red-vented Malimbe (2013-05-01)
Weaver Wednesday [45]: Golden Palm Weaver (2013-04-24)
First PHOWN record for Red-vented Malimbe (2013-04-19)
Weaver Wednesday [44]: Speke's Weaver (2013-04-17)
Weaver Wednesday [43]: Speckle-fronted Weaver (2013-04-10)
Weaver Wednesday [42]: Black-chinned Weaver (2013-04-03)
PAPER: Nests of the Black-chinned Weaver described (2013-04-01)
Weaver Wednesday [41]: Slender-billed Weaver (2013-03-27)
Weaver Wednesday [40]: Southern Red Bishop (2013-03-20)
Weaver Wednesday [39]: Asian Golden Weaver (2013-03-13)
Weaver Wednesday [38]: Southern Brown-throated Weaver (2013-03-06)
Weaver Wednesday [37]: Donaldson-Smith's Sparrow-Weaver (2013-02-27)
Weaver Wednesday [36]: Taveta Golden Weaver (2013-02-20)
Annual Report for the ADU 2012 (2013-02-14)
Weaver Wednesday [35]: Dark-backed Weaver (2013-02-13)
Cape Weaver colony in Plettenburg Bay (2013-02-12)
Weaver Wednesday [34]: Zanzibar Bishop (2013-02-06)
Weaver Wednesday [33]: Holub's Golden Weaver (2013-01-30)
"Weavers for Africa" Conference, 26 Jan 2013 (2013-01-27)
New weaver items added this week (2013-01-24)
Weaver Wednesday [32]: Cape Weaver (2013-01-23)
Weaver Wednesday [31]: Chestnut-crowned Sparrow-Weaver (2013-01-16)
Weaver Wednesday [30]: Sakalava Weaver (2013-01-09)
Weaver Wednesday [29]: Strange Weaver (2013-01-02)
Village Weaver survey (2013-01-01)
Weaver Wednesday [28]: White-billed Buffalo-Weaver (2012-12-26)
Weaver Wednesday [27]: Vieillot's Black Weaver (2012-12-19)
"Weavers for Africa" Conference, 26 Jan 2013 (2012-12-13)
Weaver Wednesday [26]: Chestnut Weaver (2012-12-12)
Southern Masked Weaver survey in Pretoria (2012-12-07)
You can throw rocks at bulldozers, or you can become a citizen scientist (2012-12-06)
Weaver Wednesday [25]: Grey-headed Social Weaver (2012-12-05)
PAPER: Southern Masked Weaver colony notes (2012-12-03)
Weaver Wednesday [24]: Spectacled Weaver (2012-11-28)
Weaver Wednesday [23]: Eastern Golden Weaver (2012-11-21)
Weaver Wednesday [22]: White-winged Widowbird (2012-11-14)
First PHOWN record for Vitelline Masked Weaver (2012-11-11)
First PHOWN record for Speckle-fronted Weaver (2012-11-10)
First PHOWN records from Gambia (2012-11-08)
Weaver Wednesday [21]: Nelicourvi Weaver (2012-11-07)
First PHOWN record for Red-crowned Malimbe (2012-11-03)
Record month for PHOWN (2012-11-02)
Weaver Wednesday [20]: Lesser Masked Weaver (2012-10-31)
Weaver Wednesday [19]: Red-collared Widowbird (2012-10-24)
PAPER: Sociable Weavers and paper wasps (2012-10-22)
Weaver Wednesday [18]: Kilombero Weaver (2012-10-17)
Weaver events at the PAOC (2012-10-12)
Weaver Wednesday [17]: Rüppell's Weaver (2012-10-10)
First PHOWN record for Orange Weaver (2012-10-05)
Weaver Wednesday [16]: Sociable Weaver (2012-10-03)
First PHOWN records from Lesotho (2012-09-29)
First PHOWN record for Cinnamon Weaver (2012-09-27)
Weaver Wednesday [15]: Rufous-tailed Weaver (2012-09-26)
Palm trees and weavers (2012-09-25)
Weaver Wednesday [14]: Bob-tailed Weaver (2012-09-19)
Weaver Wednesday [13]: White-headed Buffalo-Weaver (2012-09-12)
Weaver Wednesday [12]: Blue-billed Malimbe (2012-09-05)
Weavers on the web: useful resources (2012-08-30)
Weaver Wednesday [11]: Red-billed Quelea (2012-08-29)
Weaver Wednesday [10]: Southern Masked Weaver (2012-08-22)
Severe storm - to survive or not (2012-08-18)
PHOWN repeats of Namibian Masked Weaver colony (2012-08-16)
Weaver Wednesday [9]: Compact Weaver (2012-08-15)
Birdpix, the latest Virtual Museum project (2012-08-10)
Weaver Wednesday [8]: Thick-billed Weaver (2012-08-08)
First PHOWN record for Donaldson-Smith's Sparrow-Weaver (2012-08-06)
Intaka photographers (2012-08-03)
Weaver Wednesday [7]: Scaly-feathered Finch (2012-08-01)
Weaver Wednesday [6]: Black-capped Social Weaver (2012-07-25)
Blog: Cape Weavers in Plett (2012-07-24)
Weaver Wednesday [5]: Red-billed Buffalo-Weaver (2012-07-18)
PAPER: Weaver nests as death traps (2012-07-16)
Eggs of Angolan weavers (2012-07-15)
Weaver Wednesday [4]: Seychelles Fody (2012-07-11)
PAPER: Nelicourvi Weaver breeding study (2012-07-09)
Weekly weaver series (2012-07-08)
Weaver Wednesday [3]: Yellow-crowned Bishop (2012-07-04)
Sociable Weaver range expansion (2012-07-03)
First PHOWN record from Sudan (2012-07-02)
Early nesting in weavers (2012-06-29)
Weaver Wednesday [2]: White-browed Sparrow-Weaver (2012-06-27)
First PHOWN record for Black-billed Weaver (2012-06-21)
Weaver Wednesday [1]: Red-headed Weaver (2012-06-20)
First PHOWN records from Nigeria (2012-06-19)
PAPER: Sex of Taveta Golden Weaver chicks (2012-06-18)
First PHOWN record for Red-collared Widow (2012-06-15)
First PHOWN record for Golden-backed Weaver (2012-06-11)
PHOWN workshops in Kenya, 27 May - 4 June 2012 (2012-06-05)
Largest flock of ringed juvenile Chestnut Weavers (2012-05-23)
White-browed Sparrow-Weaver and climate change (2012-05-21)
First PHOWN record for Bocage's Weaver (2012-05-16)
PHOWN workshops in Kenya (2012-05-15)
First PHOWN record for Rufous-tailed Weaver (2012-05-13)
First PHOWN record from Sierra Leone (2012-05-10)
Sociable Weaver associations (2012-05-08)
Off-setting your carbon footprint (2012-04-25)
PAPER: Red-headed Weaver colony revisited. (2012-04-24)
PiX magazine: "... offset your carbon footprint – let your pics count for conservation" (2012-04-19)
Sociable Weaver survey in Namibia (2012-04-18)
Sociable Weaver survey at Tswalu Kalahari (2012-04-13)
Bird ringing course, Zambia, 29 March - 6 April 2012 (2012-04-11)
First White-browed Sparrow-Weaver PHOWN records from Zambia (2012-04-07)
First PHOWN records of Loanga Weaver (2012-03-23)
Weavers from Plett to PE (2012-03-17)
PHOWN records for Kenya (2012-03-05)
Tracking PHOWN priorities (2012-02-28)
Ringing and PHOWNing in Hopefield (2012-02-26)
48th PHOWN species & first Kilombero Weaver PHOWN record (2012-02-23)
PHOWN in Tanzania (2012-02-21)
Launch of WRAP (Weaver Research in Africa Project) (2012-02-17)
Weaver ringing trip, Zululand, 6-12 February 2012 (2012-02-13)
First Tanganyika Masked Weaver PHOWN record (2012-02-06)
Sociable Weaver demography project (2012-02-01)
Launch of WRAP (Weaver Research in Africa Project) (2012-01-30)
First PHOWN record from Swaziland (2012-01-27)
Story of a Spectacled Weaver nest (2012-01-23)
Lesser Masked Weaver range in KwaZulu-Natal (2012-01-18)
Weaver demography on the Cape Peninsula (2012-01-16)
Save the date: 11 Feb 2012, ADU 20th anniversary, Pietermaritzburg (2012-01-13)
Red-billed Quelea midday roosts (2011-12-26)
Cape Weaver chick retrapped 2 years later (2011-12-12)
PHOWN along national roads on your holiday trip (2011-12-07)
Weaver research trip, Tswalu, 14-17 November 2011 (2011-11-21)
First PHOWN record for Golden Palm-Weaver Ploceus bojeri (2011-11-18)
PAPER: Breeding biology of the Loango Weaver (2011-11-11)
PHOWN priorities (2011-11-10)
ADU Digital Biodiversity Week - summer results (2011-11-07)
PHOWN in National Botanical Gardens (2011-10-31)
ADU Digital Biodiversity Week - summer (2011-10-27)
Taveta Golden Weaver (2011-10-17)
Arid Zone Ecology Forum, Nieuwoudtville (2011-10-10)
Ugandan PHOWN records (2011-09-15)
Black-headed (Yellow-backed) Weaver in Cape Town (2011-09-12)
PHOWN Photo of the week (2011-09-05)
PAPER: Largest Red-headed Weaver colony (2011-08-31)
The PHOWN network is expanding (2011-08-30)
Video PHOWN (2011-08-24)
The next PHOWN call: repeats! (2011-08-12)
PHOWN at 1000 (2011-08-05)
PHOWN firsts from Ghana (2011-08-02)
ADU Digital Biodiversity Week - PHOWN results (2011-08-01)
ADU Digital Biodiversity Week (2011-07-22)
Early nesting in weavers (2011-07-18)
Weaver breeding information (2011-07-04)
Weaver chick now 1 year 10 months 12 days old (2011-06-27)
Weaver birds may hold secret of ageing (2011-05-30)
The least known breeding factor in weavers (2011-05-09)
Most southerly Sociable Weaver colony (2011-05-03)
Ethiopia dials in to PHOWN (2011-04-12)
Sparrow-weavers at Barberspan (2011-03-03)
Exciting PHOWN records (2011-03-01)
Chestnut Weaver breeding records (2011-02-07)
PAPER: Sociable Weaver helpers (2011-02-01)
Second PHOWN newsletter (2011-01-31)
Weaver records on the Vaal Dam (2011-01-28)
Robben Island survey of weaver colonies (2010-10-29)
The 10/10/10 challenge: 357 weaver nests counted (2010-10-13)
Volunteer opportunity (2010-10-08)
The 10/10/10 challenge: action for climate change (2010-10-08)
PHOWN at the Stanford Bird Fair (2010-10-02)
A century of PHOWN records (2010-09-24)
Google Maps takes part in PHOWN ! (2010-08-25)
How large are weaver colonies? (2010-08-19)
PHOWN - the furthest north colony (2010-08-05)
Phone in to take part in PHOWN ! (2010-07-29)

All Weaver Watch news items