Buceros erythrorhynchus Temminck, 1823, Podor, Senegal. Four subspecies.
English: African red-billed hornbill, South African red-billed hornbill, Damaraland red-billed hornbill; French: Calao a bec rouge; German: Rotschnabeltoko; Spanish: Toco Piquirorojo.
13.8 in (35 cm); female 0.2-0.44 lb (90-200 g), male 0.27-0.48 lb (124-220 g). Small, black and white with spotted wing coverts; long slender red bill with small casque.
T. e. erythrorhynchus: Niger Delta to Ethiopia and Somalia, south to Tanzania; T. e. kempi: Southern Mauritania, Senegal to Niger Delta; T. e. rufirostris: Southern Angola, northern Namibia, Zambia, southern Malawi and northeastern South Africa; T. e. damarensis: Northwestern and central Namibia.
Open savannas, woodland, and dry thorn-scrub. BEHAVIOR
Territorial, maintaining boundaries by calling and displaying on conspicuous perch early morning.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Active forager. Commonly joins other birds when feeding.
Lays two to seven eggs one to two months after start of rains. Incubation 23-25 days; fledging 39-50 days and female emerges with first fledgling. Remaining chicks reseal the nest cavity using their own droppings and undigested food. Nesting success ranged from 90% to 94% in Transvaal and Kenya, respectively but overall productivity is around 1.5 chicks.
Not threatened. Widespread and common, mixing well with domestic stock on open range as long as sufficient nest trees available.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦
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