The African Grey Hornbill (Tockus nasutus) is a large big-beaked African bird.
The African Grey Hornbill has a grey-brown body with a long white stripe from its eye to the back of its neck (nape), and another white stripe down the centre of its back. It has brown wings edged in white. Its throat and chest are pale grey-brown, and its belly is white.
The male has a large downward curved black beak with a cream patch on its maxilla (upper beak), and narrow pale lines on its mandible (bottom beak). The female has a large black beak with a dark red beak tip, and half of the maxilla (upper beak) is a cream-yellow colour.
It measures 45 centimetres (18 inches) tall.
The African Grey Hornbill ranges from Senegal in west Africa to Ethiopia in east Africa, down the eastern part of Africa, and into South Africa. It prefers savannahs and open woodlands close to rivers and streams.
It is omnivorous, eating insects, fruit, and reptiles. It feeds mainly in trees, and not on the ground.
Females lay 2-4 white eggs in a tree hollow. The nest has a door made from mud, mashed fruit, and manure.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM