Olive Bush-Shrike ( Telophorus olivaceus, family: Malaconotidae)

olive bush shrike kruger national park birds The Olive Bush-Shrike (Latin name Telophorus olivaceus) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 750 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 702 also a picture of the Olive Bush-Shrike on page 721. The Olive Bush-Shrike belongs to the family of birds classified as Malaconotidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Olive Bush-Shrike is also known by these other names: Rufous-breasted 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

Near endemic species is one that is confined to a specific geographical region rather than a single country for example. Certain birds in The Kruger National Park are near endemic to Mozambique, and Zimbabwe for example. One such example is the Olive Bush-Shrike and this species depends upon a certain type of habitat for survival. Destroy that habitat and the bird becomes endangered.

In terms of distribution of the Olive Bush-Shrike in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. Olive Bush-Shrike : 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 Olive Bush-Shrike is an extremely small bird about half the size of a house sparrow. The height of the Olive Bush-Shrike is about 19 cms and its weight is about 34 gms

You will find that the male Olive Bush-Shrike plumage and colours are different to that of the female Olive Bush-Shrike

  • Head is olive.
  • Eye is chestnut.
  • Bill is grey.
  • Throat is white.
  • Back is olive.
  • Legs are yellow.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Olive Bush-Shrike feeds on the ground mainly


Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Olive Bush-Shrike is monogamous unless its mate dies. In the event of a partner dying Telophorus olivaceus will seek out a new mate

The nesting habit of Olive Bush-Shrike is to create the nest in branches of a tree or shrub. The bird lays eggs which are green in colour and number between 1 to 2

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Olive Bush-Shrike are: woodlands . The Olive Bush-Shrike is also at home in wetland and bushveld areas.

You will normally see the Olive Bush-Shrike in pairs.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Umthethi

Zulu ... Unknown

Afrikaans ...Olyfboslaksman

German ... Olivwrger

Portuguese ... Picano-olivceo

French ... Gladiateur olive

Dutch ... Olijfgroene Bosklauwier

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

Robert's 7th edition number ... 750

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