European Bee-eaters are colony nesters that typically breed in open country in warmer climates. The average bird meal consisted of 90.8 % honey bees and 9.2 % beetles. Before eating a bee, the European bee-eater removes the sting by repeatedly hitting the insect on a hard surface. [11] Their impact on bee populations, however, is small. Durch Auswahl einer Region können sich die Sprache und die Werbeinhalte auf der Adobe Stock-Website ändern. There is a further moult into breeding plumage in winter in Africa.[4]. Found in open and semiopen country, mainly in drier areas; nests colonially in burrows dug into sand banks, often river banks. Huge collection, amazing choice, 100+ million high quality, affordable RF and RM images. The bee-eaters are diurnal, although a few species may migrate during the night if the terrain en route is unsuitable for stopping or if they are crossing the sea. This species occurs as a spring overshoot north of its range, with occasional breeding in northwest Europe. They make a relatively long tunnel, in which they lay five to eight spherical white eggs around the beginning of June. UK, "Rare bee-eater birds found nesting in Cumbrian quarry", https://www.nottinghampost.com/news/local-news/rare-bee-eater-nests-attracted-276061, "Prigonirea prigoriei. [2] The genus name Merops is Ancient Greek for "bee-eater", and apiaster is Latin, also meaning "bee-eater", from apis, "bee". They catch insects in flight, in sorties from an open perch. It breeds in southern Europe and in parts of north Africa and western Asia. The European bee-eater (Merops apiaster) is a near passerine bird in the bee-eater family, Meropidae. However, studies show the bee-eaters do not intentionally fly into the apiary, rather they feed on the insects caught on pastures and meadows within a radius of 12 km (7.5 mi) from the colony, this maximum distance being reached only when there is a lack of food. [citation needed], The most important prey item in their diet is Hymenoptera, mostly Apis mellifera. Many species are colonial in the breeding season and some species are also highly gregarious when not nesting. During courtship, the male feeds large items to the female while eating the small ones himself. [15], Predation is more likely when the bees are queening or during peak migrations, from late March till mid-April, and in mid-September. Find the perfect european bee eater nest stock photo. Vlha pestrá | European bee-eater | Merops apiaster - YouTube Both male and female care for the eggs, which they brood for about three weeks. Female tends to have greener rather than gold feathers on shoulders. Hives close to or under trees or overhead cables are also at increased risk as the birds pounce on flying insects from these perches. Non-breeding plumage is much duller and with a blue-green back and no elongated central tail feathers. [Myths and truths about honey bees and bee eaters ]", "Bee-eater is not to blame for decline in honey bees", European bee-eater videos, photos & sounds, Species text in The Atlas of Southern African Birds, Feathers of European bee-eater (Merops apiaster), Ageing and sexing (PDF; 5.4 MB) by Javier Blasco-Zumeta & Gerd-Michael Heinze, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=European_bee-eater&oldid=985123904, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2013, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2012, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, In 1920, a pair tried to nest in a sand bank of the, In 1955, three pairs of bee-eaters nested in, A pair took up residence on farmland adjacent to the, A pair excavated a nest hole at a coastal site in. It can reach a length of 27–29 cm (10.6–11.4 in), including the two elongated central tail feathers. It is strongly migratory, wintering in tropical Africa. [5] Their typical call is a distinctive, mellow, liquid and burry prreee or prruup. [16], European bee-eater painted by John Gould - English ornithologist, Close-up video of a female European bee-eater, RSPB Handbook of British Birds (2014). No need to register, buy now! Both male and female care for the eggs, which they brood for about three weeks. It can eat around 250 bees a day. Observations show that the birds actually enter the apiary only in cold and rainy periods, when the bees do not leave the hive and other insect prey are harder for the bee-eaters to detect. A study in Spain found that these comprise 69.4% to 82% of the European bee-eaters' diet. They eat less than 1% of the worker bees in areas where they live. European bee-eaters have attempted to nest in Britain on at least 5 occasions:[citation needed], This bird breeds in open country in warmer climates. Two European bee-eater on ground near the hole nest. These bee-eaters are gregarious—nesting colonially in sandy banks, preferably near river shores, usually at the beginning of May. Distinctive, fairly common summer migrant to warmer regions, from winter grounds in Africa. They also feed and roost communally. Bee-eaters are highly social, and pairs sitting or roosting together are often so close that they touch (an individual distance of zero). Adults begin to moult in June or July and complete the process by August or September. [12], A study found that European bee-eaters "convert food to body weight more efficiently if they are fed a mixture of bees and dragonflies than if they eat only bees or only dragonflies. [5] Most males are monogamous, but occasional bigamy has been encountered. These bee-eaters are gregarious—nesting colonially in sandy banks, preferably near river shores, usually at the beginning of May. 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