Appearance The Northern Pied Babbler is a small, 8.5" (22cm) bird with brown upperparts and white underparts with brown patches on the sides of the breast and flanks. Behind the bill are dark-brown to black 'lores'. Pure white eyes beneath the white-streaked forehead and crown. The similar Black-lored Babbler, seen further north-west and not overlapping, does not have a white belly.
Habits Northern Pied Babblers are sociable birds, seen in groups of 3 - 10 individuals. They roost together and preen each other. They are territorial birds that squabble with other groups if feeding overlaps. They make a rough cup-shaped nest of twigs, bound with grass and lined with leaves, inside a thorn bush. 2 or 3 eggs are laid and incubated for 14 days. The fledged chicks can fly after a further 7 days, but stay with the group, helping to look after the next brood.
Diet Northern Pied Babblers feed on the ground in groups, chattering (babbling) loudly, They eat invertebrates, seeds and berries, tossing vegetation around to find their food.
Resident Northern Pied Babblers are endemic to East Africa, commonly seen east of Kenya's Rift Valley, from Meru & Nyeri, south across the Highlands to the Tanzanian border. They favour acacia bush, forest edges and are sometimes seen in wooded or bushed gardens.
Extra Northern Pied Babbler Facts The Northern Pied Babbler's call is a chattering "sheerak~sheerak~sheerak~shak~shak~shak".
Photographs Photographed in Kenya's Nairobi National Park.