Crimson Breasted Shrike :
POPULATION & DEMOGRAPHY:
Common. In e Botswana, est 2 birds/10 ha, and 1 bird/ha in Okavango Delta
Densities est 1 pair/2.5-7.0 ha (1 pair/4.5 ha, n = 11) at Olifantsfontein, Gauteng and
1 pair/12.5 ha (no n) at Nylsvlei, Limpopo Province.
Oldest ringed bird 8.2 yr.
Resident and sedentary, but may move locally into riverine woodland during non-br season
HABITAT: Kalahari thornveld, Acacia savanna and semi-arid scrub with scattered clumps of small trees
GENERAL HABITS: Usually in territorial pairs, occasionally singly.
Agile and active, but secretive; constantly changes posture and jerks or swings tail
Territorial pairs counter-sing and interact with excited bowing, side-to-side movements and tail-jerking.
When foraging on ground, has characteristic upright posture, wing tips pointed down and tail held horizontal, jerking up and down with each bounce.
After a few minutes on ground, scampers up through bush, zigzagging from branch to branch until hidden. \
Roosts on mid- to lower branches of thorn tree, especially Sickle-bush Dichrostachys cinerea, 1-4.5 m (av 2.4 m, n = 175) above ground.
Male and female sleep 1 to a few metres from each other, sitting pressed against tree trunk at base of thick branch.
In a 3-year study, 1 pair used 19 roost sites, typically arriving at roost 5-10 min before sunset, leaving 10 min before sunrise in summer, 15-10 min before in winter.
Flight heavy, with shallow wing-beats.
ref : Roberts bird guide