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Silvery-cheeked Hornbill

The Silvery-cheeked Hornbill (Bycanistes brevis) is a large bird, with length from 75 to 80 cm, characterized by a very large creamy casque on the beak, smaller in females. The head is silver-grey and the rest of the plumage is black, except for a broad white stripe on the lower back. Silvery-cheeked Hornbills are uncommon localized residents of the tall evergreen forests of eastern Africa from Ethiopia to South Africa. In Zimbabwe they are threatened by habitat destruction. Usually they live in pairs and sometimes roost in flocks of hundreds of individuals. This hornbill feeds on fruits, insects, other birds' eggs and centipedes. They breed in spring (September and October) and lay clutches of 1 to 3 white eggs, incubated for 40 days. The young remain with both parents for circa 80 days.


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