Wild Birds

Rufous-crowned or Purple Rollers

The Rufous-crowned Rollers (Coracias Coracias naevius / naevia) – also known as Purple Rollers – are members of the Roller family.

Species and Ranges

Lilac-throated Roller, Rufous-crowned Roller, or Rufous-crowned Rollers (Coracias naevius naevius, Daudin, 1800) – Nominate form

Range: Senegal east to Somalia, and south to northern Tanzania.

Purple Roller, Rufous-crowned Roller, or Rufous-crowned Roller (mosambicus) (Coracias naevius mosambicus, Dresser, 1890)

Range: Angola and Namibia east to Zambia, south to Mozambique, and northeastern South Africa (northern Natal).

Habitat: Mostly associated with dry open brush and wooded areas.

Rufous-crowned Roller, Coracias naevia (formerly Purple Roller) Vumbura Plains, Botswana,


They feed on lizards and invertebrates (including insects), and may also eat small birds.


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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