Paula Gilhooley…..Southern Ground Hornbill in KNP

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The largest of the Hornbills but in a different family from other hornbills. The Southern Ground Hornbill is very large, and easily spotted in the bush with its dark black feathers and bright red facial ornamentation.  The tips of the wings are white in flight but are tucked out of sight when walking on the ground.  They are scarce and found in savanna  and adjoining forests.  Their range and numbers are decreasing  and are now mainly confined to large reserves where they are protected.

Hornbills have a loud booming voice and often form a duet early in the morning .  They occur in small family groups including juveniles and females along with the males.

Many of the hornbills in Kruger National Park are banded and tracked due to their decreasing numbers.

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