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Fischer's Starling - BirdForum Opus

Photo by nkgray
Samburu National Reserve, Kenya, October 2012
Lamprotornis fischeri

Spreo fischeri


18cm. A small starling.

  • Dull ash-grey upperparts with some bronze sheen on back and rump
  • Cap or whole head paler ash-grey than rest of upperparts, sometimes whitish
  • Grey upperwing-coverts
  • Dull bronzy green flight-feathers and tail
  • Black lores and moustachial stripe
  • Ash-grey chin, throat and breast
  • White belly, flanks, thighs and undertail-coverts
  • Creamy white eye
  • Black bill and legs

Sexes similar. Juveniles have brownish upperparts with pale feather edges, a brown eye and a yellowish bill.


East Africa: found in southern Ethiopia and Somalia to eastern Kenya and north-eastern Tanzania.
Locally common.


This is a monotypic species which is sometimes placed in genus Spreo or Cosmopsarus.


Wooded savanna and dry, open thornveld. Occurs up to 1900m.


Forages in pairs or small flocks on the ground. Associates loosely with Golden-breasted Starling and Wattled Starling.


Feeds mainly on insects, takes also berries.


A monogamous species, breeding co-operative with some helpers. The nest is a grass dome placed 2,5m above the ground in a thorn tree. Lays 4 eggs.


Presumably a resident species with some local movements.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2013. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.8., with updates to August 2013. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507

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