Alternative name: Purple Glossy Starling
- Lamprotornis purpureus
27cm. A large glossy starling with a short tail and a rather large bill.
Difficult to separate in field from other Glossy Starlings
- Metallic purple head and body
- Glossy green wings
- Short tail
- Yellow eye
- Black bill and legs
Sexes are similar. Juveniles are much duller, with grey underparts and a brown iris.
From Senegal and Gambia east to Guinea-Bissau, southern Mali and northern Guinea east in the savanna belt to southern Chad, northern Central African Republic, southern Sudan, Uganda and western Kenya.
Common to abundant in its range.
Clements accepts two subspecies:
- L. p. purpureus
- L. p. amethystinus
Other authorities treat this species as monotypic.
Savannah woodlands, especially with fruiting figs. Open woodland and cultivation. Occurs up to 1500m.
This is a gregarious and noisy bird, with typical starling squeaks and chattering.
The diet includes fruit and insects.
Forages in trees, bushes and on the ground.
Breeding season from February to May. The nest is placed in a tree hole. Lays 2 - 3 eggs.
- Clements, JF. 2011. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to August 2011. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
- 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
- Animal Pictures Archive
- BF Member observations
- BirdForum Opus contributors. (2021) Purple Starling. In: BirdForum, the forum for wild birds and birding. Retrieved 17 May 2021 from https://www.birdforum.net/wiki/Purple_Starling