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Northern Red-billed Hornbill - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by mikemik
Manyara, Tanzania, May 2018
Tockus erythrorhynchus


35 cm (13¾ in); A small, black-and-white Hornbill.

  • Spotted wing-coverts
  • Black tail with white in outer tail
  • Long, slender red bill with dark patch on lower mandible
  • Yellow to pinkish bare skin around eye and on throat
  • Brown eyes

Females are smaller and have only a small dark patch on the lower mandible.
Juveniles are similar to males but have a shorter and pale orange bill.


Photo © by mikemik
Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, May 2018

From Sierra Leone east to Somalia and south to Tanzania.


This is a monotypic species.
Was formerly considered included in Red-billed Hornbill.


Tree and bush savanna.



Feeds mainly on insects but takes also small vertebrates like geckos, nestlings and rodents. Some fruits and grain eaten, too.
Feeds mainly on the ground.


Breeding season from March to November. Nest in a natural cavity or in an old barbet or woodpecker hole. The female seals the entrance with her own droppings and food remains. There is one narrow entrance through which the male passes food to the mother and chicks. Lays 2 - 7 eggs.
Often takes over nest of other hornbill species.


Undertakes food-related local movements.


  1. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and J Sargatal, eds. 2001. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 6: Mousebirds to Hornbills. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334306
  2. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/

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