- Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis
150 cm high. The male is larger and heavier than the female
- Iridescent black head, neck, back, wings, and tail
- White body and primaries
- Red bill
- Very large
- Black band
- Yellow frontal shield (the “saddle”)
- Black legs and feet
- Pink "knees"
Female has a yellow iris
Male iris is brown, small yellow wattles at base of bill
Juveniles: brownish-grey plumage
Western Africa: Senegambia, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Mali, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, DRC and Angola
Eastern Africa: Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, Zambia, Mozambique and Malawi
Southern Africa: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal and Swaziland
Dams and large river courses, flood plains, wetlands and swamps.
It builds a large, deep stick nest in a tree. The 1 or 2 white eggs are incubated for 30-35 days; the chicks fledge 70 - 100 days later.
The diet includes fish, frogs and crabs, but also on young birds, and other land vertebrates.
Click on photo for larger image
- Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2013. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.8., with updates to August 2013. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
- BirdForum Opus contributors. (2021) Saddle-billed Stork. In: BirdForum, the forum for wild birds and birding. Retrieved 12 April 2021 from https://www.birdforum.net/wiki/Saddle-billed_Stork