The Silvery-Cheeked Hornbill (Bycanistes brevis) is a large African bird with a huge beak.
The Silvery-Cheeked Hornbill has iridescent black feathers with a silvery-grey head, and silvery spots on its cheeks. It has a white rump, white lower back, and white tips on its tail feathers. It has a large cream-coloured casque (bony growth) on its beak. It has dark eyes, and females have red skin around their eyes.
It measures 75-80 centimetres (30-31 inches) tall.
The Silvery-Cheeked Hornbill is found in eastern Africa, from Ethiopia to South Africa. It prefers evergreen forests with tall trees.
It is omnivorous, eating fruit, insects, small birds, rodents, reptiles, and centipedes.
The Silvery-Cheeked Hornbill is often seen in pairs, but can be seen in flocks of up to 100 individuals. Females lay 1-3 white eggs, which hatch after about 40 days. The chicks stay with both parents for about 80 days before they become independent.
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM