It is a bird of thick bush and other well-wooded areas. The hanging basket-shaped nest is built in a tree, and contains two eggs. The food is insects and fruit, especially figs, found in the tree canopies where the orioles spend much of their time.
The male is striking in the typical oriole black and yellow plumage, although the plumage is predominantly yellow, with solid black only in the flight feathers and tail centre. There is a great deal of gold in the wings, which is a distinction from Golden Oriole, Oriolus oriolus, which winters in Africa.
The female is a drabber green bird, distinguished from the European species by more contrasting wings and black around the eye. Orioles are shy, and even the male is remarkably difficult to see in the dappled yellow and green leaves of the canopy.
The flight is somewhat like a thrush, strong and direct with some shallow dips over longer distances.
The call is a screech like a jay, but the song is a beautiful fluting fee-ooo fee-ooo, unmistakable once heard.