Cape white-eyes serve as prey to larger predators such as cuckoo hawks (Aviceda cuculoides), common fiscals (Lanios collaris) and fork-tailed dronges (Dicrurus adsimilis). Domestic cats also greatly reduce the numbers of Cape white-eyes. Cape white-eyes prey upon a variety of insects, fruits, nectar and seeds. As they consume seeds and nectar, these birds are likely important pollinators and seed dispersers for local plant species. Cape white-eyes also participate in a behavior known as 'anting'. The birds allow ants to crawl within their feathers and feed on bacteria. This is considered a mutualistic partnership in that the ants are provided with food and Cape white-eyes do not eat those that have been on their feathers.
Ecosystem Impact: disperses seeds; pollinates
- Mutualistic ants (Anoplolepis custodiens)