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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Hoopoe, Upupa epops

Hoopoes are widespread in Europe, Asia and North Africa, as well as Sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar. They migrate from all but the southernmost part of their range to the tropics in winter.

Their habitat is open cultivated ground with short grass or bare patches. They spend much time on the ground hunting insects and worms. That diet may have been among the reasons the Hoopoe is included on the Old Testament's list of unclean birds

Rare pic of 4 Hoopoe sitting together on a tree ...

One of my favourite 'flying bird' pictures. A Hoopoe in flight

The Hoopoe is 25–29cm long, with a 44–48cm wingspan. This black, white and pink bird is quite unmistakable, especially in its erratic flight, which is like that of a giant butterfly. The crest is erectile, but is mostly kept closed. It walks on the ground like a starling.

The song is a trisyllabic "oop-oop-oop", which gives rise to its English and scientific names.

The nest is in a hole in a tree or wall. Like those of its relatives the kingfishers, the nest tends to contain copious amounts of faeces and smell very foul as a protection against predators. Nesting hoopoes are capable of squirting fecal matter at intruders.




joan said...

Hello Umang,

I like you 2 pictures of the Hoopoe bird.

In your blog they are quite small. Do you also have it somewhere in your gallery on a larger size?