Buffy Pipit ( Anthus vaalensis, family: Motacillidae)

buffy pipit kruger national park birds The Buffy Pipit (Latin name Anthus vaalensis) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 719 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 1107 also a picture of the Buffy Pipit on page 1120. The Buffy Pipit belongs to the family of birds classified as Motacillidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Buffy Pipit is also known by these other names: Sandy Plain-backed Pipit, Buffy Plain-backed Pipit, Pale Plain-backed Pipit.

In the previous edition of Roberts (ie 6th edition) the Buffy Pipit was called the

The map of the Kruger you see on this page shows the areas (coloured orange) where this bird has been identified. The basic information was provided by the Avian Demographic Unit based at UCT and I created the maps from that information ... the green dots show the locations of the various Kruger National Park Rest Camps

The Buffy Pipit is neither Endemic or near Endemic to the Kruger National Park.

In terms of distribution of the Buffy Pipit in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. Buffy Pipit : see above distribution map.

Identification assistance for this avian species ...

One of the first indicators to take note of when trying to identify a bird is it relative size. For example how big is the bird compared to a well known familiar bird. The Buffy Pipit is a small bird about the size of a house sparrow. Do not take this relative indicator as anything other than a rough easy to remember indicator. It is not a accurate visualization. The height of the Buffy Pipit is about 18 cms and its weight is about 29 gms

The male and female Buffy Pipit have the same plumage and colours

  • Head is brown.
  • Eye is brown.
  • Bill is brown.
  • Throat is grey.
  • Back is brown.
  • Legs are yellow.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Buffy Pipit feeds on the ground, and on the wing mainly




Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Buffy Pipit is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Anthus vaalensis will seek out a new mate

The nesting habit of Buffy Pipit is to create the nest in branches of a tree or shrub. The bird lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 2 to 3

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Buffy Pipit are: woodlands and grasslands and riverine areas. The Buffy Pipit is also at home in wetland and bushveld areas.

You will normally see the Buffy Pipit in pairs.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Unknown

Zulu ... Unknown

Afrikaans ...Vaalkoester

German ... Vaalpieper

Portuguese ... Petinha do Vaal

French ... Pipit du Vaal

Dutch ... Vaal-Rivierpieper

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For in-depth birding information please refer to these authoritative avian references ...

Robert's 7th edition number ... 719

The main reference source for this data was "Roberts - Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition" . Other references were "Newmans Birds of the Kruger Park" by Keith Newman published circa 1980 . Names in foreign languages were obtained from the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town website , www.fitzpatrick.uct.ac.za