Carmine Bee-Eater

Carmine Bee Eater is a truly captivating avian species that graces the landscapes of the African wilderness. The Carmine Bee Eater (Merops nubicoides) is a sight to behold, with its spectacular plumage of vibrant colours. Its body is adorned with brilliant tones of carmine, scarlet, and emerald green, generating a mesmerising tapestry of colours that catches the attention of every viewer. It appears like a crimson streak rising over the air from afar.


How the Carmine bee-eaters hunt

The Carmine Bee Eater’s incredible flying power is what actually distinguishes it. These avian acrobats are well-known for their quick flying patterns and remarkable hunting abilities. They glide through the air with astounding accuracy, making exquisite twists and turns that appear almost scripted. Witnessing their amazing aerial shows would leave even the most seasoned traveler speechless. They have a particular affinity for bees, wasps, and other flying insects, which they expertly snatch from the air using their sharp beaks. It is a true spectacle to witness their lightning-fast dives as they seize their prey mid-flight.

Breeding behaviour of Carmine bee-eater

Another extraordinary aspect of the Carmine Bee Eater’s behavior is its social structure. These birds are highly social creatures, often gathering in large colonies that can number in the hundreds or even thousands. They build intricate burrows in sandy riverbanks, where they nest and raise their young. These colonies become a buzzing hub of activity, filled with vibrant displays of courtship rituals, intricate nest construction, and the incessant chatter of countless voices. Observing their cooperative behaviors and the harmonious symphony of their calls is a captivating experience that immerses visitors in the true essence of the African wilderness.

We offer the best guaranteed photographing opportunity of Carmine bee-eaters. We have dedicated floating hides near the vertical riverbanks where Carmine bee-eaters build their nest in South Luangwa. Our guests can reach very close to the nesting sites to photograph them in action without disturbing the birds.

South Luangwa National Park boasts an abundance of riverine woodlands and fertile floodplains, creating a perfect breeding ground and foraging area for the Carmine Bee Eater. These birds are attracted to the park’s numerous sandy riverbanks, where they excavate their burrows for nesting. The park’s rich and diverse insect population, including bees and wasps, serves as a plentiful food source for these colorful aerial hunters.

Visitors to South Luangwa National Park are often treated to the extraordinary sight of Carmine Bee Eaters in their natural habitat. The park’s experienced guides and naturalists are well-versed in the behavior and habits of these birds, making it easier for visitors to spot and appreciate their presence. Guided walks or game drives along the park’s riverbanks and floodplains offer fantastic opportunities to observe these birds in flight, witness their hunting prowess, and capture stunning photographs. We have dedicated Hides to photograph the Nesting Carmine bee-eater in action from very close distance.

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