The pen-and-seal is a passerine bird in the family Estrildidae. Also known as kiss-of-girl (Minas Gerais), pen-and-seal-common-bill can (Santa Catarina) and bombeirinho (Holy Spirit).
It is an exotic species, from the southern Africa region. Introduced in Brazil by slave ships in the reign of Peter I. Reintroduced in São Paulo in the second half of the nineteenth century. It must have been taken to other states by man, by reason of its reduced flight capacity, its distribution is less spontaneous than the sparrow.
It measures about 10.5 cm long and weighs 7.5 g.
The most prominent morphological distinctive are the white-resplendent lumps at the base of the maxilla and mandible of the puppies, which reflect light, appearing as phosphorescent in the dark interior of the nest, guiding parents for food. These lumps dry after the chicks leave the nest, but remain in the mouth design.
Similar sexes, lower Crisso and coverts of black tail and dark male brown in females. Immature black beak, almost without waves and the bright red plumage.
A curious fact is that the species feeds primarily of African grasses seeds, such as grass and guinea elephant grass, introduced in our country for cattle pasture
Nests in thickets, spherical or oval, with thick walls made of grass, chicken feathers and cotton, accessible by a narrow tube. Put 3 small white eggs, which are sat for about 13 days.
It is common in fields and vacant lots in cities. Originally from Africa, the nozzle-to-seal was brought to Brazil in slave ships to serve as pet bird, during the reign of Peter I. Having escaped the cages, initially in Rio de Janeiro, spread over several Brazilian regions. Live in herds of about 6 individuals.