Wild Birds

Black-winged Red Bishops

The Black-winged Red Bishops or Crimson-crowned Weaver (Euplectes hordeaceus) is a common, resident (non-migratory) bird in tropical Africa, where it occurs from Senegal to Sudan and south to Angola and Tanzania.

This weaver inhabits open country, especially in tall grassland and often near water.


The Black-winged Red Bishops measure 13 – 15 cm in length.

The breeding male’s plumage is red except for his black face, belly wings and brown tail. The conical bill is thick and black. He displays prominently, singing high-pitched twitters from tall grass, puffing out his feathers or performing a slow hovering display flight.

The non-breeding male is yellow-brown, streaked above and shading to whitish below. It has a whitish supercilium.

Females are similar, but paler.

Young birds have wider pale fringes on their flight feathers.

Similar Species: They resemble non-breeding male Northern Red Bishop, but are darker have black wings, and are black below the bill and red above.

  • Breeding males of the Northern Red Bishop have red throats, and the black patch on the crown extends further back and also extends down under the bill.
  • The Orange Weaver / Bishop is black above the bill and orange below the bill).

Diet / Feeding

They build spherical woven nests in tall grass. The average clutch consists of 2 – 4 eggs.

Diet / Feeding

The Black-winged Red Bishop feeds on seed, grain, and some insects.

Weaver Information and Species Listing … Weaver Photo Gallery


Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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