Southern Tchagra ( Tchagra tchagra, family: Malaconotidae)

The Southern Tchagra (Latin name Tchagra tchagra) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 742 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 694 also a picture of the Southern Tchagra on page 752. The Southern Tchagra belongs to the family of birds classified as Malaconotidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Southern Tchagra is also known by these other names: Levaillant's Bush-Shrike, Tchagra Bush-Shrike.

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

Endemic species is one that is confined to a specific country or region. For example certain birds endemic to South Africa only exist in that country. One such example is the Southern Tchagra and this species depends upon a particular habitat for survival. Destroy that habitat and the bird will possibly be lost forever.

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

Identification assistance for this avian species ...

The Southern Tchagra is a smallish bird but somewhat larger than a house sparrow. The height of the Southern Tchagra is about 22 cms and its weight is about 54 gms

The male and female Southern Tchagra have the same plumage and colours

  • Head is olive.
  • Eye is brown.
  • Bill is brown.
  • Throat is white, grey.
  • Back is olive.
  • Legs are grey.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Southern Tchagra feeds on the ground and in foliage mainly



Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Southern Tchagra is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Tchagra tchagra will seek out a new mate

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

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Southern Tchagra are: woodlands and grasslands

You will not see Southern Tchagra in flocks. The bird prefers to act singly or in pairs.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Umnguphane

Zulu ... Unknown

Afrikaans ...Grysborstjagra

German ... Kaptschagra

Portuguese ... Picano-assobiador-austral

French ... Tchagra du Cap

Dutch ... Kaapse Tsjagra

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

Robert's 7th edition number ... 742

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 ,