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The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Lesser Honeyguide

Afrikaans name: Kleinheuningwyser

A Lesser Honeyguide in Vernon Crookes Nature Reserve

Lesser Honeyguide

Photo © Steven Herbert

Indicator minor

The Lesser Honeyguide may be found in most areas of South Africa apart from the very driest. Beyond our borders it occurs over much of sub-Saharan Africa.

True to their name the Lesser Honeyguide does feed on bees. It will eat all stages of the bees life cycle as well as the wax. It also eats wasps, various other insects and spiders.

These birds are brood parasites. When its time to breed they lay their egg in an unsuspecting hosts nest. Birds such as barbets, kingfishers, bee-eaters, wood-hoopoes and many more raise the young of the Lesser Honeyguide.

They are found in a number of habitats including riverine forest, woodland, savanna and gardens.


References and further reading

A First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 93

Birds of the Natal Drakensberg Park - Author: Robin Little and William Bainbridge - Year Published: 1992 - Page: 60

Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 48

Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 134

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 413

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 410

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 276

List of South African Birds

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