After Flandrum Hill posted a cute little story of Canadian chickadees, I remembered that I had recently taken some photos of a little Cape White-eye taking a bath in the little birdbath in our front garden.
As you can see, they are small green-yellow birds with a startling white circle around their eyes. They are very sociable and usually appear in a fairly large group, chattering and chirping loudly, as they hop and flutter from one branch to the next. Their chirrupping call sounds almost exactly like the Irish greeting “Dia duit” (literally “God to you”), which sounds rather like “Dia-gridgh”.
According to the Wikipedia:
“The Cape White-eye feeds mainly on insects, but also soft fleshy flowers, nectar, fruit and small grains. It readily comes to bird feeders.”
Although they do indeed love coming to our bird feeder (which is looking rather dilapidated with all the wear and tear and exposure to the elements), we also have many small timid grey doves, beautiful reddish rock pigeons and vicious ring-necked doves, all of whom compete with the little white-eyes and the similarly cute Cape Sparrow.
They are such entertaining little birds! I wish I could get them to trust me enough to hand-feed them!