Nigrita (bird)

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Uganda 2011 246-crop.jpg
Grey-headed nigrita (N. canicapillus)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Estrildidae
Genus: Nigrita
Strickland, 1843
  • N. fusconotus
  • N. bicolor
  • N. luteifrons
  • N. canicapillus

The nigritas or negrofinches are small passerine birds belonging to the genus Nigrita in the estrildid finch family Estrildidae. There are four species which occur in forest, secondary growth and scrubland in West, Central and East Africa.

They are 10-15 centimetres long. The bill is short and black and is fairly slender in some species. The colour of the plumage varies but all have a dark tail. The upperparts are grey or brown and the underparts are black, grey, white or reddish-brown. The grey-headed negrofinch and male pale-fronted negrofinch have a black face and the white-breasted negrofinch has a black cap. Negrofinches have whistling or trilling songs and calls.

They feed on insects, fruit and seeds. They often forage high in the treetops, usually alone or in pairs.

Species list[edit]


  • Clement, Peter; Harris, Alan & Davies, John (1993) Finches and Sparrows: An Identification Guide, Christopher Helm, London.
  • Sinclair, Ian & Ryan, Peter (2003) Birds of Africa south of the Sahara, Struik, Cape Town.