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About African Ground Hornbill ( Click- Readmore )


Scientific name: Bucorvus leadbeateri
Higher classification: Bucorvus
Mass: 3.8kg (Adult) Length: 100cm
Conservation status: Vulnerable (Population decreasing)

The African Ground hornbill, is one of two species of ground hornbill, which are both found in the southern regions of Africa, ranging from Kenya to South Africa. African ground hornbill is the largest species of hornbill and they inhabit both woodlands and savannas. It preys on mammals, such as hares, rats, squirrels, and even small monkeys.


Facts about African Ground Hornbill

  1. Ground hornbills call together before dawn in a chorus of repeated low grunting notes that sounds not unlike a distant lion. They amplify their calls by inflating the big, red, balloon-like wattle below their bill.
  2. Small animals need to lie low when a party of ground hornbills is out foraging because these omnivores snap up anything – from insects and lizards to small birds, rodents, tortoises and snakes as big as puff adders.
  3. Ground hornbills are very slow breeders and, as a result, a pair produces just one brood of two chicks every nine years, only one of which survives. Immature birds within the social group work as ‘helpers’, caring for the single chick.
  4. Ground hornbills have lived up to 70 years in captivity. This makes them one of the world’s longest-lived birds, on par with albatrosses.
  5. Since traditional African cultures saw ground hornbills as harbingers of rain, killing them was taboo. Thus, sadly, with the passing of such beliefs, these birds have become increasingly threatened.