Northern Red Bishop (Euplectes franciscanus)

Northern Red Bishop (Euplectes franciscanus)

Photo@Yan Van Danne

Northern Red-Bishop is have sexual dimorphism. Breeding Males has bright red back all the down to the tail, with wing panels being dark brown. The the front head to the face is black with a all black belly.

The male have eclipse plumage when not breeding in order to remain inconspicuous-at this time they resemble the drab female.This dimorphism is indicative of polygymous, colonial breeding species with intense reproductive competition-male taking a number of mates (up to eight) simultaneously or consecutively without offereing assistance in incubation or check-rearing.

He does however protect the territory vigorously from conspecific males. Males display to female with what  is called the “bumble flight” where the back and head feathers are fluffed-giving them the appearance of a bumb-bee. Female feed the chicks by regurgitation.

Locally common in grassland, savanna and wetland in the Rift Valley around the Lakes of Baringo and Bogoria