Premières données sur le régime alimentaire des jeunes Pics de Levaillant (Picus vaillantii)

Henine-Maouche, A., Bougaham, A.F., Moulaï, R. & Nicolau-Guillaumet, P. 2017. Premières données sur le régime alimentaire des jeunes Pics de Levaillant Picus vaillantii. Alauda 85: 152-154.


Le suivi d’une nichée de Pic de Levaillant nous a apporté des résultats préliminaires qui méritent d’être approfondis. Les espèces de fourmis reconnues dans des sacs fécaux de ses jeunes, à la fois de petite taille (autour de 3 mm) et communément rassemblées en fourmilières de plusieurs milliers d’individus (CAGNIANT, 1997) sont, et de loin, les plus présentes sur ses zones de chasse dans les Babors comme elles le sont dans d’autres localités en Algérie. Le régime alimentaire de ce pic, comme son très proche parent, le Pic vert, pratique à l’évidence une myrmécophagie presque exclusive et Le choix des captures à l’attention de ses poussins, peut être qualifiée d’opportuniste.

First data on the diet of young Levaillant’s Woodpecker Picus levaillantii


At the study site, the fragments analysis of preys species found in fecal bags of Picus vaillantii, enabled us to say that Levaillant’s Woodpecker is myrmecophagy (99,93%) with a clear preference for the Tetramorium biskrensis ants (87,03%). The other species are weakly represented such Aphaenogaster testaceopilosa (3,81%) and Pheidole pallidula (2,96%). However the terrestrial preys, with a 3mm size, are the most appreciated by this woodpecker (92,34%). The results obtained with SORENSEN index (24,71%) and IVLEV index reveal that the preys consumed by P. vaillantii appear dissimilar enough with the environment preys and there’s little common species between the food mode and the preys availability. On other hand, there is a some similar between preys ants found in fecal bag and those from environment (SORENSEN index equivalent 61,11%). We can conclude that Levaillant’s woodpecker is selective in food search.

Pic de Levaillant (Picus vaillantii), Forêt de Msila, Oran, Algérie, mars 2017 (Ali Mehadji).

Pic de Levaillant (Picus vaillantii), Forêt de Msila, Oran, Algérie, mars 2017 (Ali Mehadji).

Diet of Short-eared Owl (Asio flammeus) in desert area at Hassi El Gara (El Golea, Algeria)

Djilali, K., Sekour, M., Souttou, K., Ababsa, L., Guezoul, O., Denys, C. & Doumandji, S. (2016). Diet of Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus (Pontoppidan, 1763) in desert area at Hassi El Gara (El Golea, Algeria). Zoology and Ecology 26: 159–165. doi: 10.1080/21658005.2016.1184907


The diet of the Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus was analysed in an arid environment in Hassi El Gara located in the southeast of El Golea (Ghardaia, Algeria). The diet was determined by analysing 138 pellets. Our data showed that the diet was dominated by mammals (Chiroptera and Rodentia). Based on relative biomass, birds were the main prey species. Mammals were the second most important prey. Mammals were the major food item throughout the seasons and their contribution to the diet ranged from 50.7% in spring to 73.6% in summer. Birds were the second numerous prey with 8.1% in summer and 29.6% in spring. The dominant prey species was Myotis sp., making up 37.8%. It was followed by Gerbillus nanus (5.4%), Columba livia (4.3%) and Bufo mauritanicus (4.1%).

Feeding behaviour and the role of insects in the diet of House Martin nestlings in Northeastern Algeria

Rouaiguia, M., Lahlah, N., Bensaci, E. & Houhamdi, M. (2015). Feeding behaviour and the role of insects in the diet of Northern House-Martin (Delichon urbica meridionalis) nestlings in Northeastern Algeria. African Entomology 23(2): 329–341.  doi: 10.4001/003.023.0228
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Monitoring of the northern house-martin in northeastern Algeria recorded the first observation of this species in early February, whereas the greatest movements occurred around the beginning of March. Breeding activity of the northern house-martin usually started one month after their return from migration, apparently triggered by the availability of food resources. Our study on the feeding frequency to nestlings showed that although feeding visits were important in early nestling rearing, the highest values were recorded at the ages of 6–10 days. The number of prey brought to chicks was highest during May and lowest during August. Analysis of the diet of chicks revealed that it was composed mainly of 48 families representing eight orders of insects, with significant dominance of Homoptera throughout the breeding season.

Breeding, habitat use and diet of Common Kestrel, Falco tinnunculus, in urban area in Algeria

Kaf, A., Saheb, M., & Bensaci, E. (2015). Preliminary data on breeding, habitat use and diet of Common Kestrel, Falco tinnunculus, in urban area in Algeria. Zoology and Ecology 25(3): 203–210.  doi: 10.1080/21658005.2015.1057989


The nesting of the Common Kestrel, Falco tinnunculus, was monitored in an urban environment (University of Oum El Bouaghi, 35°52′46″ N, 7°05′28″ E) over three successive years from 2011 to 2013. The mean clutch size was 5.75 eggs/nest. The incubation period was spread over at least 27 days. The hatching success was 0, 50 and 60.83% for the years 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. The size of the hunting area was between 5.92 and 255.07 ha. The diet analyses of Common Kestrel adults showed that their foods included grasshoppers (31.49%), snakes (12.7%), lizards (21.35%) and rock dove chicks (34.45%).

Common Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus), Algeria

Common Kestrel – Faucon crécerelle (Falco tinnunculus), Algeria (photo copyright: Abdelaziz Mazouz, flickr)

Variation in the diet of Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) at Lake Réghaïa, Algeria

Lardjane-Hamiti, A., Metna, F., Boukhemza, M., Merabet, S., & Houhamdi, M. (2015). Variation in the diet of Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus (Aves, Rallidae) at Lake Réghaïa, Algeria. Zoology and Ecology 25: 227–234.
doi: 10.1080/21658005.2015.1046270
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The diet of the Common Moorhen Gallinula chloropus was studied at Lake Réghaïa (Algeria). A total of 600 faecal samples were collected from February 2010 to January 2012. The results showed that green plant materials (especially Poaceae) were the dominant faecal components (86.7 ± 23.8%), followed by invertebrates (13.2 ± 23.8%) and grit (0.03 ± 0.05%). Seventeen plant species belonging to eight different families were identified in 2010/2012. The major item identified in faecal contents was Poaceae. Paspalum distichum was the most important diet category. Others grasses mostly eaten were Poa annua, Avena sp., Phragmites sp. and Panicum repens. Other plant species recorded in faeces were Carex hispida, Polygonum lapathifolium, Thypha angustifolia, Plantago major, Mentha pulegium, Plantago crassifolia, Panicum repens and Carex hispida. The Common Moorhen diet contained invertebrates, and ephippium of Daphnia sp. were the most dominant. Insects were recorded, but with a negligible proportion.

Diet of the Coot (Fulica atra) in the nature reserve of Lake Réghaïa, Algeria

Metna, F., Lardjane-Hamiti, A., Boukhemza-Zemmouri, N., Boukhemza, M., Merabet, S. & Abba, R. (2015). Diet of the Coot Fulica atra (Aves, Rallidae) in the nature reserve of Lake Réghaïa (Algiers, Algeria). Zoology and Ecology 25(1): 34–45. doi:10.1080/21658005.2014.994363


The study of the Coot’s (Fulica atra) diet was carried out from February 2010 to January 2012 in the nature reserve of Lake Réghaïa in the eastern part of Algeria. For that purpose, a total of 600 faecal samples, or 300 faecal samples per year, were analysed. The analysis showed that the bird’s food spectrum primarily consists of plant species, animal prey being very rare. Overall, 34 plant species belonging to 17 families and 18 animal species were identified. Thirty plant species belonging to 15 families were identified during the first study period (February 2010–January 2011) and 32 plant species belonging to 17 families were identified during the second study period (February 2011–January 2012). The relative abundance of Poaceae family plants in the Coot’s diet was estimated at 65.1% and that of Cyperaceae and Typhaceae at 7.3 and 4%, respectively. The share of other plant families in the bird’s diet was found to be negligible. The proportion of animal prey in the diet represents 3.1%. Among plants of the Poaceae family, the most favoured are the following three species Paspalum distichum, Phragmites sp. and Panicum repens with rates of 33.2, 18.6 and 15.7%, respectively. The intake of other taxa was lower. Dietary variations during the year coincided with changes in local availability of food and species phenology.

Common Coot - Foulque macroule (Fulica atra)

Common Coot – Foulque macroule (Fulica atra), at nest (photo: Mohamed Missoum).

Dans le même site:

Lardjane-Hamiti, A., Metna, F., Sayaud, M.-S., Guelmi, M., Boukhemza, M. & Houhamdi, M. 2012. Le Fuligule milouin Aythya ferina nicheur dans la réserve naturelle du Lac de Réghaia (Alger, Algérie). Alauda 80: 151–152..

Diet variability in the White Stork Ciconia ciconia in eastern Algeria

Cheriak, L., Barbraud, C., Doumandji, S. & Bouguessa, S. 2014. Diet variability in the White Stork Ciconia ciconia in eastern Algeria. Ostrich 85: 201–204.
doi: 10.2989/00306525.2014.971451


The diet of the White Stork Ciconia ciconia was studied at El Merdja, Algeria, from 1997 to 1999 and in 2007 by analysing 240 regurgitated pellets. A total of 12 234 prey types were identified and classified into six categories. Insects dominated during each month and year of the study. Three orders of insects were mainly consumed. Coleoptera species were the most frequently consumed prey during all months and years, followed by Dermaptera species, except in 1998 when Orthoptera were more frequent. The frequency of families of prey insects varied considerably depending on the year: Carabidae were dominant in 2007, Tenebrionidae in 1999 and Carcinophoridae in 1997.