Original artwork of the South African sugardbird sitting on King Protea flower.
The Cape Sugarbird is a grey-brown bird that easily recognisable by a spot of yellow under its tail and the very long tail feathers present in males. The male is 34–44 cm long, and the shorter-tailed, shorter-billed, and paler breasted female 25–29 cm long. Another characteristic of the Cape Sugarbird is the sound it makes when it flies. The main flight feathers are arranged in such a way that when the bird beats its wings, a frrt-frrt sound is made with the intention of attracting females.