PictureBUSHY-CRESTED HORNBILL (Anorrhinus galeritus)


Hornbills are large, black or brown, and white, mainly arboreal birds, with long, heavy bills. Many species have large protuberant casques on top of the bill which may be gaudily coloured. Hornbills are found throughout Africa and tropical Asia, and throughout Indonesia to New Guinea. They eat fruit and insects and have harsh, penetrating calls.

The nesting habits of the family are interesting. The incubating females are usually sealed into tree hole nests with mud, leaving only a small aperture through which food can be passed by the male. When the young are hatched the female breaks out but reseals the nest entrance again until the young are ready to leave. Ten species of hornbill occur in Sumatra, eight in Borneo, but only three are found in Java.

Description: Smallish (70 cm) black hornbill with floppy crest. Lack of white in plumage diagnostic. Tail is greyish brown with wide terminal black bar. Bare skin around eye and on throat blue.

Iris-red in male, black in female, blue in immature; bill-black in male, whitish in female; feet-black.

Voice: High-pitched strident, chattering yelps given by several birds together.

Range: Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, N Natuna, Borneo.

Distribution and status: Abundant hornbill of lowland and sub-montane forests up to Kelabit highlands in Borneo, and up to 1800 m on Mt. Kerinci in Sumatra.

Habits: Living in noisy flocks of 5-15, generally feeding in middle canopy of closed forest.