Weaver species category

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Weaver species that feed on nectar

Village Weaver
Village Weaver,
feeding on nectar of Erythrina

Many weavers are generalist nectar-feeders but are now considered to be the major pollinators of aloes (see Cape Weaver). The fodies all feed on nectar, and the Rodrigues Fody even has a brush-tipped tongue that is adapted to nectarivory. Three species were reported as feeding on nectar for the first time as recently as 2014, namely the Red-billed Buffalo-Weaver, White-browed Sparrow-weaver, and Red-billed Quelea (see news about paper). Some publications list the Chestnut Weaver as feeding on nectar but this is an error, and the food plants listed do not even occur in the range of the Chestnut Weaver (see news about paper). The nectar of Aloe marlothii attracts more bird species than any other plant thus far recorded, and this seems to be true in the case of the weavers too, with 14 weaver species being recorded (Oschadleus 2014). One Asian weaver, the Baya Weaver, is known to feed on nectar (see news).

The list below shows weavers that have been recorded as feeding on nectar, but many more weavers are likely to do so. The categories are based on number of literature references, as a proxy for frequency.

Red-headed Weaver
Red-headed Weaver, feeds on Schotia nectar
(see news about paper)
Photo by K Yoganand

Weavers that feed on nectar regularly
Cape Weaver Ploceus capensis
Village Weaver Ploceus cucullatus
Southern Masked Weaver Ploceus velatus
Spectacled Weaver Ploceus ocularis
Aldabra Fody Foudia aldabrana
Red Fody Foudia madagascariensis
Eastern Golden Weaver Ploceus subaureus
Dark-backed Weaver Ploceus bicolor
Holub's Golden Weaver Ploceus xanthops
Mauritius Fody Foudia rubra
Red-collared Widowbird Euplectes ardens
Baglafecht Weaver Ploceus baglafecht
Rodrigues Fody Foudia flavicans

Mountain Aloe
Mountain Aloe Aloe marlothii

Weavers that feed on nectar occasionally
Lesser Masked Weaver Ploceus intermedius
Baya Weaver Ploceus philippinus
White-winged Widowbird Euplectes albonotatus
Red-headed Weaver Anaplectes rubriceps
Thick-billed Weaver Amblyospiza albifrons
Southern Brown-throated Weaver Ploceus xanthopterus
Forest Fody Foudia omissa
Red-billed Quelea Quelea quelea
Seychelles Fody Foudia sechellarum
Yellow Bishop Euplectes capensis
Vitelline Masked Weaver Ploceus vitellinus
Southern Red Bishop Euplectes orix
White-browed Sparrow-weaver Plocepasser mahali
Bertram's Weaver Ploceus bertrandi
Black-necked Weaver Ploceus nigricollis
Cardinal Quelea Quelea cardinalis
Red-billed Buffalo-Weaver Bubalornis niger
Vieillot's Black Weaver Ploceus nigerrimus
Sao Tome Weaver Ploceus sanctithomae
Little Weaver Ploceus luteolus
Maxwell's Black Weaver Ploceus albinucha
Principe Golden Weaver Ploceus princeps
Chestnut-crowned Sparrow-weaver Plocepasser superciliosus

Weavers with single records of nectar feeding
Sakalava Weaver Ploceus sakalava
Red-vented Malimbe Malimbus scutatus
Ruppell's Weaver Ploceus galbula
Black-headed Weaver Ploceus melanocephalus
Red-headed Malimbe Malimbus rubricollis
Yellow-mantled Weaver Ploceus tricolor
Red-headed Fody Foudia eminentissima