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A photo of a Orange River Francolin (Scleroptila gutturalis)
Orange River Francolin

Orange River Francolin

Scleroptila gutturalis

The Orange River francolin, known scientifically as Scleroptila gutturalis, is a bird that graces the grasslands and woodlands of Africa with its presence. This species is a member of the Phasianidae family, which includes other game birds such as pheasants and partridges.

Identification Tips

Observers should note the distinct variation in appearance between the northern and southern populations of this species. In the northern reaches of its range, which includes countries like Ethiopia and Kenya, the Orange River francolin's neck-line does not extend to the eye, and it sports a whitish belly. Conversely, in the southern locales such as South Africa and Lesotho, the neck-line does indeed reach the eye, and the belly is of a buff coloration.

Habitat

This francolin favors the grassland and woodland habitats, where it can find cover and forage.

Distribution

The Orange River francolin is distributed across a swath of the African continent, with its range extending from Ethiopia in the north to South Africa in the south, and including countries such as South Sudan, Somalia, Uganda, Kenya, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, and Lesotho.

Conservation status

The IUCN Red List has classified the Orange River francolin as Least Concern, indicating that, at present, there are no immediate threats to its population levels that would warrant a higher degree of conservation action.

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