Parts of Africa, Europe, and Asia.
Insectivore. Mostly honeybees, bumblebees and wasps, and any other species of flying insects.
Habitat: forest, savannah, shrubland, grassland, agricultural areas, always near water sources.
Incubation: 13-20 days / 4-10 eggs
Social structure: small or large colonies
Lifespan: 6 years
Estimated population in the wild: 1,440,000-3,000,000
Threats: loss of suitable prey due to widespread application of pesticides, loss of nesting sites through canalisation of rivers or agricultural development, shooting for sport, for food or as a crop pest.
IUCN Status: Least concern
Did you know that:
- They have the ability to remove the sting from insects before they eat them.
- They nest in riverside. Both parents excavate a burrow with a length of 70 -150cm. At the end of the burrow there is an oval nest-chamber.
- They are one of the few European birds to have helpers at the nest, usually relatives that help with the feeding of the young.