Southern Ground Hornbill

Southern Ground Hornbill

The Southern Ground Hornbill is one of the most interesting birds in the animal kingdom. This majestic bird is under threat and now is very rare to see.

Where to Find The Southern Ground Hornbill?

You can still find this amazing bird in South Africa’s protected areas like Hluhluwe Imfolozi game reserve where I filmed this clip.

Interested to see what other videos Tim Brown Tours has to offer? Visit our YouTube page on the below link:

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Some Strange Habits of the Southern Ground Hornbill

  • Near Impossible Nesting …
    • Nesting in a Hollow tree 3 meters off the ground – is no mean feat when you are the size of a Southern Ground Hornbill!
    • Once a nesting site is found and the male and female Hornbill have mated, the female will bed down. During this time the male will fly mud to the nest and both will assist in closing off the hole for the safety of the female.
    • A small hole is left for the male to fly food to the female during the incubation period. This is about 40 days.
Nested “In” … what to do in case of emergency???

The issue here is that if the male gets killed or dies on route what will the female do!?

Well the female has only two options:

  1. Break out of the nest to save herself
  2. Stay with the chicks and die!

She cannot fly food to the nest if she decides to break out. This is because she plucks her flight feathers to use as bedding (part of the nesting process)

Cainism – nature and survival of the fittest Southern Ground hornbill

Although usually 2 eggs are laid, the first born will kill the second born and usually eat its sibling. This is normal and known as Cainism. It has its route in the bible with the story of Cain vs Abel.

This ensures that one chick has the best chance of survival as two mouths to feed can be hard and this could mean both chicks do not survive.

Southern Ground Hornbills will only be fully mature at about 6 years of age meaning a long time with their parents or very small family groups.

Due to the lack of suitable nesting sites,Cainism, and the length to reach maturity, it is therefore understandable why these birds are so rare!

During a Safari with Tim Brown Tours we were lucky enough to see this family of Southern Ground Hornbill.

More Information

So for more information visit our home page. www.timbrowntours.com

If you need help then just drop us an email or have a look through our website and see if there is a Durban Safari that suits your needs.

Tim Brown Tours – with numerous awards and a long history of great reviews on TripAdvisor, can help you. So look at our alternatives to visiting the Kruger National Park. And join us for your South African Safari experience! We look forward to hosting you in the near future! Book Now and get an experience of a lifetime.

So Head on over to our website and book your very own tour today if you are interested in Nature and Travel in South Africa. 

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