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Southern Ground Hornbill

Afrikaans name: Bromvoël

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Southern Ground Hornbill close-up

Photo © Steven Herbert

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Southern Ground Hornbill in Kruger Park

Southern Ground Hornbill in Kruger National Park

Photo © Steven Herbert

Bucorvus leadbeateri

The Southern Ground Hornbill is a large bird that can weigh up to 6 kg. In fact it is the largest species of hornbill.

Some people are surprised to find out that the Ground Hornbill can fly. It does, however, spend most of its time on the ground looking for food.

Males are larger than females and all the bare skin on their throats and faces is red while the female is red with some bluish skin on the throat below the bill. Juveniles have yellow skin.

The Southern Ground Hornbill eats a variety of foods including reptiles, insects, amphibians and small mammals.

They live in small groups and may often be seen walking along side roads in game parks like Kruger National Park. Southern Ground Hornbills are quite capable of flying but you tend to see them on the ground. They stroll around in small family groups looking for food on the ground.

Southern Ground Hornbills make their nests in large hollows in trees. The breeding pair need assistance from other birds in the group to successfully raise their chicks.

A Southern Ground Hornbill putting its large bill to good use

Above - They put their large bills to good use

Photo © Steven Herbert

Portrait of Southern Ground Hornbill

Above - Portrait of a Southern Ground Hornbill

Photo © Steven Herbert



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