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Somali Bee-eater - BirdForum Opus

Photo by max1
Samburu, Nth Kenya, September 2017
Merops revoilii


16-18 cm (6¼-7 in); a small bee-eater

  • Reddish-brown forehead
  • Blackish stripe through eye to neck
  • Green upperparts
  • White throat
  • Cinnamon underparts
  • Blue rump


An East African bird found in Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya and Tanzania.


This is a monotypic species[1].


Arid thornscrub, steppes and grassland with scattered bushes.



They feed on small airborne insects which it caught during short flights from a, normally, low perch.


Unlike most other bee-eaters it is found either singly or in pairs even during the nesting season. Its preferred nesting site is in an excavated hole in the side of a well but it also uses roadside banks and sandy ground adjacent to palm roots.


Click on photo for larger image


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved Dec 2017)
  3. BF Member observations

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