The Black-collared Lovebird (A. swindernianus) occurs in two to four disjunct populations in West and Central Africa, where it inhabits lowland evergreen rainforest, both primary and secondary, usually below 700 m but reported up to 1800 m in Uganda. Other than female Grey-headed Lovebirds (A. canus), Black-collared Lovebirds are the only lovebirds with green heads. The Red-faced Lovebird (A. pullarius), which has a partially overlapping range, has a red bill (not blackish as in the Black-collared Lovebird) and no collar. Black-collared Lovebirds are generally encountered in small flocks flying swiftly over the forest canopy. They are quite shy and rarely encountered near ground level. They appear to feed largely on Ficus fig seeds, but also take other seeds and small fruits, as well as adult and larval insects.
(Collar 1997 and references therein; Juniper and Parr 1998 and references therein)
- Collar, N.J. 1997. Genus Agapornis. P. 409-411 in: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., and Sargatal, J., eds. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 4. Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona.
- Juniper, T. and M. Parr. 1998. Parrots: A Guide to Parrots of the World. Yale University Press, New Haven, Connecticut.
Habitat and Ecology
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
The black-collared lovebird (Agapornis swindernianus) also known as Swindern's lovebird is a small, 13.5 cm (5 in) long, African parrot in the genus Agapornis. It is a mostly green parrot with black band on the back of its neck, and a dark greyish-black bill. Both sexes are similar. It is rarely kept in captivity because of its dietary requirement for a native fig.
There are three subspecies of the black-collared lovebird:
- The nominate subspecies, A. s. swindernianus - Liberia, Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana
- Cameroon black-collared lovebird, A. s. zenkeri - Cameroon, Gabon and Congo
- Ituri black-collared lovebird or Emin's lovebird, A. s. emini - Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda.
Distribution and habitat
The black-collared lovebird is distributed across a wide range in equatorial Africa. It inhabits the forests of Cameroon, Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Liberia and Uganda. They hide high in the forest canopy and are characterized as being very shy.
It is rare in some parts of its range. The range is so large that the population is difficult to estimate, but it is believed that the population is not under significant threat. The black-collared lovebird is evaluated as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Black-collared lovebirds are rarely kept in captivity or as pets. They require certain native fig seed or fig flesh as a basis of their daily diet, and without these vital dietary necessities they do not normally thrive or breed well in captivity.