Behaviour of Red-necked Spurfowl Pternistis afer in the Boknes and Cannon Rock coastal resorts, Alexandria district, Eastern Cape province, South Africa

  • JH van Niekerk
  • M Barendse
  • F Mare


The social behaviour of marked Red-necked Spurfowls Pternistis afer was studied at Boknes and Cannon Rock coastal resorts near Alexandria in the Eastern Cape province between January 2001 and June 2008. Red-necked Spurfowls form breeding pairs. Courtship displays contribute to pair formation, but are also readily performed by males that are not paired. The elegant displays and crows by territorial males suggest that females select between competing males on the basis of physical appearance. A territorial male paired and copulated with one female and, as she produced eggs and incubated, he courted three other females within his territory. The basis of the Red-necked Spurfowl’s use of the landscape consists of a home range in which a core area, the territory, is formed. The territory is physically defended by the male by means of crowing and chasing interloping males. Females that enter a male’s home range are courted. Males do not assist with care of their offspring.

Ostrich 2009, 80(1): 43–45

Author Biographies

JH van Niekerk
Department of Environmental Sciences, College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, University of South Africa, PO Box 392, Pretoria 0003, South Africa
M Barendse
PO Box 96, Cannon Rocks 6186, South Africa
F Mare
PO Box 96, Cannon Rocks 6186, South Africa

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1727-947X
print ISSN: 0030-6525