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Alternative name: African Drongo
23ā26 cm (9-10 in)
Female similar but duller
Formerly the population in Tanzania and much of Kenya were assigned to the nominate race, D. a. adsimilis now placed within the range of D. a. fugax. It is described as smaller with a more deeply forked tail.
 Similar species
Differs from similar Velvet-mantled Drongo in having tail shorter than wing, a less deep tail fork, slightly less gloss and no pale rictal spot. Square-tailed Drongo and Shining Drongo are smaller and have a less forked tail.
Forms a superspecies with Black Drongo of Asia and was formerly regarded as conspecific. They were split in 2007 by Pasquet et al.The combined pre-split species was known as "Common Drongo" or just "Drongo." Former subspecies D. a. divaricatus now recognized as a separate species, the Glossy-backed Drongo.
Four subspecies recognized:
Woodlands including riverine woodlands, moist and arid savanna, forest edges and grassland or fynbos with available perches, plantations of alien trees, gardens, farmyards and town parks.
Sits very upright whilst perched prominently, like a shrike. An aggressive bird, which will attack much larger species, including birds of prey, snakes and humans, if their nest or young are threatened.
Their prey is taken aerially and on the ground, and includes flying insects, moths and bees; most often they will sit on a branch and sally out from there, but it may also be sitting on the ground. They are often seen taking prey disturbed by large animals or bush fires. They also often steal food from other birds, and have been known to steal food from suricates (Meerkats) and Southern Pied Babblers by sounding false alarms.
Monogamous, solitary nester building thin-walled, strongly woven cup nests in high tree-forks. Two to five eggs of highly varying colour.
The call is a metallic strink-strink. They are also excellent mimics.
Resident; possibly some short-distance movements in southern part of range.
 Recommended Citation
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