Meet the Carmine Bee-eater - characterized by its stunning plumage, this bird is strikingly beautiful with its richly colored feathers that are a sight to behold


Both males and females of this species look very similar, though in some cases their eyes may be a different color!

The largest most richly colored member of their species also makes this bird the most strikingly beautiful.

Meet the Northern carmine bee-eater

Photo Courtesy of Peter Wilton / CC BY 2.0 The northern carmine bee-eater (Merops nubicus or M. n. nubicus), is an African near passerine bird in the Meropidae family of bee-eaters.


Characterized by their strikingly colorful plumage this bird is mainly carmine in color, except for a green-blue head, throat, and distinctive black mask. Their bodies are generally slender, with a pointed black beak and red eyes. Sharp claws enable them to perch on vertical surfaces.

Photo Courtesy of Bernard DUPONT / CC BY-SA 2.0Both males and females of this species look very similar, though in some cases their eyes may be a different color.

In others, the tail-streamers of the male are slightly longer than the females.


The Northern carmine bee-eater is native to much of central and northern Africa, such as the Central African Republic, Benin, and Cameroon.

Not surprisingly bees form a large part of the Northern carmine bee-eater's diet, but so do other flying insects such as ants, grasshoppers, and locusts. These insects are captured usually by the birds perching on a branch, keeping a lookout for a passing insect and then catching it on the wing.


These birds nest in large colonies, usually on cliffs or near river banks, where they dig horizontal nesting tunnels, some up to eight feet or more, long. The female lays up to five eggs per clutch. Both parents will share the incubation role and help raise the chicks. After 21 – 32 days the chicks are almost fully-fledged, while the parents continue to help feed them until they can hunt on their own.

Due to this bird's wide range, it is not considered to be under any immediate threat of a decline in population.


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