The Violet-Backed Starling (Cinnyricinclus leucogaster) is a small bird. It is also called the Plum-Coloured Starling or the Amethyst Starling.
The male and female Violet-Backed Starling have very different appearances. The male has an iridescent violet-coloured back with a white underbelly. The female is brown with flecks on her white underbelly. The male has a dark-violet-black face. Both have a dark-grey beak and dark-grey legs. Both have yellow eyes with dark pupils.
It measures about 18 centimetres (7 inches) long.
The Violet-Backed Starling is native to Sub-Saharan Africa. It prefers woodlands and savannah forests.
It is rarely seen on the ground, and is commonly found in trees and other locations away from the ground.
The Violet-Backed Starling is omnivorous, eating fruit and insects, such as bees, wasps, butterflies, locusts, and grasshoppers.
The female lays 2-4 pale blue eggs with reddish-brown spots. The eggs hatch after 12–14 days. The male helps to feed the chicks until they fledge (gain their flight feathers) after about 21 days.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM