Wildlife Pictures Online logo

Malachite Sunbird in Eclipse Plumage

Malachite sunbird in eclipse plumage
Malachite Sunbird in "eclipse" plumage with colorful aloe flowers in background, Curry's Post, KZN, South Africa. © Scotch Macaskill

Camera Gear: Canon EOS 50D; Canon EF 400mm f/5.6 L USM; Focal Length: 400mm; Shutter speed: 1/320; Aperture: f/5.6; ISO: 400

The male malachite sunbird (Nectarinia famosa) is usually depicted in its unmistakable breeding plumage — overall bright, metallic green colors with bright yellow pectoral tufts.

However, before it reaches that stage of ultimate sartorial bling, the male must first go through a period of "eclipse" plumage — the comparatively dull, seasonal stage found in birds that do exhibit a distinct breeding plumage (as in photo above).

Even during this stage, with the green patches starting to show through, it is more colorful than the female of the species, though it can look a little blotchy and dishevelled.

Permitted Uses: See Terms of Use.

Return to Garden Pictures


Have your say or ask any questions in the comment box below.

Home /  About /  Contact

Contact Details: Scotch Macaskill, Dirt Road Traders, Currys Post Road, Howick, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. Tel: +27 (0)82 578 2329. Privacy: Your privacy is guaranteed. See our Privacy Policy for more. This site accepts advertising and other forms of compensation - see Disclosure and Advertising for details. Site updated: 2022. Copyright © 2002 - 2022 Scotch Macaskill