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Red-fronted Tinkerbird
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Information
Common Name Red-fronted Tinker Barbet
Range eastern South Africa, with a separate population from southern Sudan and Ethiopia south to central and eastern Tanzania.
Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Piciformes
Family Lybiidae
Genus Pogoniulus
Species Pogoniulus pusillus
Conservation Status
LCSpecies
Least Concern

The Red-fronted tinkerbird (Pogoniulus pusillus), formerly known as the red-fronted tinker barbet, is a species tinkerbird in the Lybiidae family.

The red-fronted tinkerbird is a widespread and frequently common resident breeder in eastern South Africa, with a separate population from southern Sudan and Ethiopia south to central and eastern Tanzania. It is sometimes considered conspecific with its northern counterpart, the yellow-fronted tinkerbird (Pogoniulus chrysoconus).

The red-fronted tinkerbird is associated with juniper forest and scrub. It nests in a tree hole and lays two or three eggs. It eats berries and fruit, particularly mistletoe, but also takes insects as it forages in deep cover.

The red-fronted tinkerbird is 9–10.5 cm (3.5–4.1 in) in length. It is a plump bird, with a short neck, large head, and short tail. The adult has black upperparts heavlly streaked with yellow and white, and a golden wing patch. Its head has a strong black and white pattern, with a red forecrown spot. Its underparts and rump are lemon yellow. Sexes are similar in appearance, but young birds lack the red forehead.

This species is distinguished from the yellow-fronted tinkerbird by the colour of the forehead spot, the golden wing patch, and its overall darker appearance. It is often confused with the red-fronted barbet, but it is significantly smaller than that species, has a black moustache and a less robust bill, and lacks a broad yellow superciliary stripe.

At about 100 repetitions per minute, the red-fronted tinkerbird's call is a fast tink-tink-tink-tink, very similar to that of the yellow-fronted tinkerbird. Many barbets perch prominently, but unlike their larger relatives, the smaller tinkerbirds sing from cover and are more frequently heard than seen.

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