India | Kerala

Great Indian Hornbill

State Bird of Kerala

Great Indian Hornbill (Buceros bicornis) is a huge pied bird with a large casqued, yellow bill. It has broad white-wing bars, white wing tips and white tail with a black central bar. The vent and thighs are white. Face, belly and lower breast are black, while upper breast and neck are yellowish. The huge yellow casque extends from the rear crown to where the thick bill de-curves.

Nest is constructed in tree cavities. The breeding season is from February-April and the female lays 1 to 3 eggs.

The bird feeds on fruits, which it tosses in the air before swallowing. It also feeds on lizards, snakes, insects, mice and other small animals.

The bird is widely seen, in flocks of 3 to 5 numbers, in the evergreen forests of Kerala. Great Indian Hornbill can be seen in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Kerala.

Updated on 7th June, 2005


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