The Black Sparrowhawk (Accipiter melanoleucus), sometimes known as the Black Goshawk or Great Sparrowhawk, is the largest African member of the genus Accipiter. It occurs mainly in forests and non-desert areas south of the Sahara, particularly where there are large trees suitable for nesting; favoured habitat includes suburban and human-altered landscapes. It preys primarily on birds of moderate size, such as pigeons and doves in suburban areas.
Typically, both genders of the black sparrowhawk are pied black-and-white when mature; generally the plumage is predominantly black, but with a white chest and throat. Some individuals may have a tendency towards melanism, showing white only on the throat and spots on the belly. As a rule there is no noticeable difference between the plumage of mature females and males. The tails are cross-barred with about three or four paler stripes, and the undersides of the wings with perhaps four or five, but these are less well-defined.
Young chicks have black eyes and white down, but when the feathers erupt they are predominantly brown. The full plumage of juveniles is a range of browns and russets with dark streaks along the head and, more conspicuously, down the chest. Commonly there are white or light-coloured spots and streaks as well, mainly on the wings. The brown plumage being a sign of immaturity, it does not attract as dangerously aggressively territorial behaviour as the mature black-and-white would. As the young birds mature, their eyes change in colour from deep black, though brown, to red.
As is common in the genus Accipiter, male Black Sparrowhawks are smaller than females; typically the weights of males lie between 450g and 650g as compared to females, which have weights in the range 750g to 980g. The typical head-body length is 40–54cm. The ceres and legs are yellow. The wingspans are modest for such a large raptor, typically not more than 1 metre; this probably reflects their arboreal habitat, though they also hunt very efficiently in open areas. The beaks and talons are typical of the genus Accipiter, and of raptors in general, being used both in capturing prey and in feeding.
Black Sparrowhawks are relatively widespread and common in sub-Saharan Africa and listed as not globally threatened by CITES. Densities range from one pair per 13 square kilometers in Kenya to one pair per 38-150 square kilometers in South Africa.
Both subspecies are only found in parts of Africa that are south of the Sahara desert; A. m. temminckii inhabit much of the northwest section such as Senegal, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Central African Republic, while A. m. melanoleucus can be found starting from the northeast section down to South Africa. They mainly inhabit forest patches and favour large trees, including the non-indigenous eucalypt, poplar, and pine, all of which are grown commercially and are able to grow up to 15 m taller than native trees. Their adaptability to secondary forests and cultivations is one of the reasons why they are not as greatly impacted by deforestation as many African forest birds.
In some areas such as Cape Peninsula, the sparrowhawks face habitat competition with Egyptian geese (Alopochen aegyptiaca), an aggressive species known to steal the nests of the sparrowhawks. This results in a costly loss for the sparrowhawks after the time and energy spent building the nest and may also lead to the death of current offspring. However, sparrowhawks are known to have more than 1 nest at a time, so in the event that one is usurped by an Egyptian goose, the pair would either inhabit the alternative nest and/or build a new one.
The Yellow-billed Stork, Mycteria ibis, is a large wading bird in the stork family Ciconiidae. It occurs in Africa south of the Sahara and in Madagascar. Its a medium-sized stork. Length: 97 cm; average body weight for males: 2.3 kg; for females: 1.9 kg. Plumage mainly pinkish-white with black wings and tail; bill yellow, blunt, and decurved at tip. Immature birds are greyish brown with dull greyish brown bill, dull orange face and brownish legs. The similar Painted Stork (Mycteria leucocephala) is an Asian bird.
The Yellow-billed Stork is one of the species to which the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA) applies.
The olive baboon (Papio anubis), also called the Anubis baboon, is a member of the family Cercopithecidae (Old World monkeys). The species is the most widely ranging of all baboons: it is found in 25 countries throughout Africa, extending from Mali eastward to Ethiopia and Tanzania. Isolated populations are also found in some mountainous regions of the Sahara. It inhabits savannahs, steppes, and forests.
The olive baboon inhabits a strip of 25 equatorial African countries, very nearly ranging from the east to west coast of the continent. The exact boundaries of this strip are not clearly defined, as the species' territory overlaps with that of other baboon species. In many places, this has resulted in cross-breeding between species. For example, there has been considerable hybridization between the olive baboon and the Hamadryas baboon in Ethiopia. Cross-breeding with the yellow baboon and the Guinea baboon has also been observed. Although this has been noted, the hybrids have not yet been studied well.
Throughout its wide range, the olive baboon can be found in a number of different habitats. It is usually classified as savanna-dwelling, living in the wide plains of the grasslands. The grasslands, especially those near open woodland, do make up a large part of its habitat, but the baboon also inhabits rainforests and deserts. Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, for instance, both support olive baboon populations in dense tropical forests.
The Abyssinian guereza or colobus Eastern black and white ( Colobus guereza ) is a species of primate catarrhines of the family Cercopithecidae and is found from sea level to 3,000 m of altitude , in the forests and wet and dry in the prairies forested of eastern Africa and central , from Ethiopia and Tanzania to Zambia , Chad and Nigeria.
It is the largest among the colobus . It reaches a length from 45 to 72 cm , plus the tail, which is from 52 to 82 cm long. Males are larger and weigh 13 to 14.5 kg , while females reach only 5 to 8 kg. His coat is black and white contrasting strongly. The main color is black, the contours of the face, chest, shoulders and tail are white, sometimes by way of pelts long U-shaped coats and a tassel on the tail, although the extent of white in the depends on the subspecies . As for all colobus, the disappearance of thumb is an adaptation to arboreal lifestyle.
The African Black Duck (Anas sparsa) is a species of duck of the genus Anas. It is genetically closest to the mallard group (Johnson & Sorenson, 1999), but shows some peculiarities in its behavior (Johnson et al., 2000) and (as far as they can be discerned) plumage; it is accordingly placed in the subgenus Melananas pending further research.
The African Black Duck is an entirely black duck with white marks on its back. It lives in central and southern Africa.It is also known as the black river duck, or (A. s. leucostigma) West African black duck or Ethiopian black duck.
It is a very shy and territorial duck. It is usually seen in pairs or small flocks. It breeds throughout the year in different areas. Incubation is about 30 days by the mother and the fledgling period is 86 days and only the mother takes care of the young.
It is a medium sized duck and is similar in size but when seen in pairs the male is noticeably bigger. Their egg quantity ranges from 4 to 8 eggs.
Though it likes to stay in rivers and streams during the day it prefers large open waters during the night. This duck likes water in the wooded hills of Africa and also like to hide its nests near running water. Also the African Black Duck makes its cup shaped nest of driftwood and matted grass. Though it builds its nest near running water it is always above flood level and on the ground.
It feeds off of larvae and pupae usually found under rocks, aquatic animals, plant material, seeds, small fish, snails, and crabs.
Hagenia abyssinica is a species of flowering plant native to the high-elevation Afromontane regions of central and eastern Africa. It also has a disjunct distribution in the high mountains of East Africa from Sudan and Ethiopia in the north, through Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Tanzania, to Malawi and Zambia in the south.
It is known in English as African redwood, brayera, cusso, hagenia, or kousso, in Amharic as kosso, and in Swahili as mdobore or mlozilozi. It is the sole species of genus Hagenia, and its closest relative is the Afromontane genus Leucosidea. Synonyms include Banksia abyssinica, Brayera anthelmintica, Hagenia abyssinica var. viridifolia and Hagenia anthelmintica.
It is a tree up to 20 m in height, with a short trunk, thick branches, and thick, peeling bark. The leaves are up to 40 cm long, compound with 7-13 leaflets, each leaflet about 10 cm long with a finely serrated margin, green above, silvery-haired below. The flowers are white to orange-buff or pinkish-red, produced in panicles 30-60 cm long.
It is generally found from 2000-3000 m elevation, in areas receiving 1000-1500 mm of rainfall annually. It can be found growing in mixed afromontane forest with Podocarpus, Afrocarpus, and other trees, and in drier afromontane forests and woodlands where Hagenia is dominant, or in mixed stands of Hagenia and Juniperus procera. It is often found near the upper limit of forest growth.
Hagenia is used as a food plant by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Turnip Moth.
Kosso, kousso or cusso is a drug which consists of the panicles of the pistillate flowers of Hagenia. At the time of the eleventh edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), the drug was imported "in the form of cylindrical rolls, about 18 inches in length and 2 inches in diameter, and comprises the entire inflorescence or panicle kept in form by a band wound transversely round it." The active principle is koussin or kosin, C31H33O10, which is soluble in alcohol and alkalis, and may be given in doses of two grammes. Kosso is also used in the form of an unstrained infusion of the coarsely powdered flowers, which are swallowed with the liquid. It is considered to be an effective anthelmintic for pork tapeworm (Taenia solium). In its anthelmintic action it is similar to Male Fern (Dryopteris filix-mas).
Use of Kosso was borrowed from Ethiopia, where as Richard Pankhurst quotes Merab as saying that "to mention it was to cover a quarter of that country's pharmacopeia." However, its primary use was, well into the 19th century, to combat human tapeworm infestations, which was endemic due to widespread consumption of dishes containing raw beef, such as kitfo and gored gored. Frequent doses of kosso, about once every two months, was the common cure. Richard Pankhurst cites numerous examples of this practice, noting that "the two-monthly event virtually constituted a holiday for the patient, who withdrew from all normal activity, the statement 'the master has taken his kosso,' being synonymous with 'he cannot receive you today.' Kosso-drinking in fact served as an excuse or justification for not keeping appointments, being used by the debtor who did not wish to meet his creditor, by the accused who wished to avoid going to court, and by the official who sought to delay answering the Emperor's summons."
Kosso or ኮሶ in Amharic is also the name of the human tapeworm, Taenia saginata. Treatment with Hagenia is often unsuccessful resulting in only partial removal of the intestinal worm.