Munia

Munia
Chestnut-breasted Munia Lonchura castaneothorax
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Estrildidae
Genus: Lonchura
Sykes, 1832
Species

See text.

Lonchura is a genus of the estrildid finch family, and includes munias (or minias), mannikins, and silverbills. They are resident breeding birds in Africa and in South Asia from India and Sri Lanka east to Indonesia and the Philippines. The name mannikin is from Middle Dutch mannekijn 'little man' (also the source of the different bird name manakin).[1]

Some of the Lonchura species were formerly placed in Spermestes. Others have been placed in a genus of their own, Euodice.

Contents

Characteristics

They are small gregarious birds which feed mainly on seeds, usually in relatively open habitats, preferring to feed on the ground or on reeds and grasses. Several species have been noted to feed on algae such as Spirogyra.[2][3]

The nest is a large domed grass structure into which 4–10 white eggs are laid. Some species also build communal roosting nests for overnight rest.

The species in this genus are similar in size and structure, with stubby bills, stocky bodies and long tails. Most are 10–12 cm in length. Plumage is usually a combination of browns, black and white, with the sexes similar, but duller and less contrasted for immature birds.

The similarities within this group and the existence of subspecies with differing vocalisations and plumage mean that some races may be elevated to species status. African and Indian Silverbill are now usually considered distinct species, and the two races of Black-throated Munia are often also split.

The munias are popular in the bird trade and many freed or escaped birds have formed feral colonies in different pockets across the world.

The Red Munia Estrilda amandava and Green Munia Estrilda formosa also take the name munia, but are in the Estrilda genus.

Species

Indian Silverbill Lonchura malabarica
Tricoloured Munia Lonchura malacca
Scaly-breasted Munia Lonchura punctulata

Notes

  1. ^ New Oxford American Dictionary (2nd ed., 2005), p. 1032.
  2. ^ Pillai, N. G. 1968 The green algae, Spirogyra sp., in the diet of the White-backed Munia, Lonchura striata (Linn.). J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 65: 490-491
  3. ^ Avery, Michael L. (1980) Diet and breeding seasonality among a population of sharp-tailed munias, Lonchura striata in Malaysia. The Auk 97(1):160-166

References


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • munia — ▪ bird       any of several small, finchlike Asian birds of the mannikin and waxbill (qq.v.) groups (family Estrildidae, order Passeriformes). The black headed munia, or chestnut mannikin (Lonchura malacca, including atricapilla and ferruginosa) …   Universalium

  • munia — n. (also known as white throated munia) type of bird (native of North America) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • munia — tikrosios munijos statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas atitikmenys: lot. Lonchura angl. mannikin; munia vok. Nonne, f rus. муния, f pranc. capucin, m ryšiai: platesnis terminas – astrildiniai siauresnis terminas – alpinė munija siauresnis… …   Paukščių pavadinimų žodynas

  • munia — communia …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • munia — /ˈmjuniə/ (say myooneeuh) noun any of various small finch like birds of the genus Lonchura. {New Latin, former genus name, from Hindi} …   Australian English dictionary

  • Munia : The Tale — Munia: The Tale Munia: The Tale Album par Richard Bona Sortie 30 septembre 2003 Enregistrement 2003 à Bonayuma recording Studio (New York, États Unis), Sear Sound (New York, États Unis) et Moftou Studio (Bamako, Ma …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Munia: The Tale — Album par Richard Bona Sortie 30 septembre 2003 Enregistrement 2003 à Bonayuma recording Studio (New York, États Unis), Sear Sound (New York, États Unis) et Moftou Studio (Bamako …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Munia de Álava — Estatua que representa al rey Fruela I de Asturias. Monasterio de Samos. Munia de Álava (¿? después de 768). Reina consorte de Asturias por su matrimonio con el rey Fruela I de Asturias, y madre de Alfonso II el Casto, rey de Asturias …   Wikipedia Español

  • Munia Mayor de Castille — Muniadomna ou Munia, dite Major, de Castille, née en 995 et morte en 1067, fut comtesse de Castille de 1029 à son abdication en 1035. Munia était la fille aînée du riche et puissant comte Sancho García de Castille ; elle épousa en 1010 le… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Munia castaneothorax — Braunbrustschilffink Braunbrustschilffink (Munia castaneothorax) Systematik Ordnung: Sperlingsvögel (Passeriformes) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.