Crested Barbet [Trachyphonus vaillantii]
The Crested Barbet is a rather colourful little bird that makes it unmistakable when spotted. The face of the bird has beautiful speckled yellow and red feathers with the odd black and white spots also found on the face. The belly of the bird closely resembles the colours of the face while the throat and wings are a beautiful spotted black and white colouration. The beak of the Barbet is thick and yellow that gradients towards black at the tip. The Crested Barbet has an iconic black tuft of feathers that gives it its name.
The Crested Barbet feeds primarily on insects but is also known to feed on eggs of other birds and also fruits.
Crested Barbets make their nests in the holes of trees or in a Sisal log found in gardens. These birds are territorial and also monogamous during mating season. The size of their territory often depends on their habitat. Eggs are laid between September and December with up to 5 eggs laid daily. After incubating for 13-17 days the young hatch from the eggs. The young are born naked and blind and are fed insects by both parents.
These birds can be found singularly or in pairs and can often be seen bouncing around on the ground in search of food. These birds do not fly easily and can only fly for short distances. These birds are rather social birds and roost in holes in trees. These birds are very vocal and have a trill call that can go on for long periods. These birds are very aggressive and have been known to attack any bird that comes within its territory.
The Crested Barbet can generally be found in savannah regions as well as sub-urban gardens, woodland thicket areas and water courses .