The focus today is on four birds named after the crowns they sport. These are not raised crests as you may imagine, but relate to their colouring. The first is the ubiquitous Crowned Lapwing (Vanellus coronatus) which occurs all over South Africa and often seen in grasslands, open fields as well as on golf courses and open parks.

Its cousin, the White-crowned Lapwing (Vanellus albiceps), on the other hand is confined to the northern parts of the country and tends to be seen near large rivers.

While up in that part of the country, let us look at the Southern White-crowned Shrike (Eurocephalus anguitimens) which prefers the dry woodland and savanna such as we find in the Kruger National Park.

Closer to home, we are occasionally privileged with visits from Crowned Hornbills (Tockus alboterminatus) in our garden.


30 thoughts on “FOUR CROWNS

    • Those pendulous wattles are interesting. It is thought that they serve the dual purpose of helping to regulate the temperature of the bird and to attract potential mates.

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  1. You really make me wish I could spend today birdwatching, Anne!

    Where exactly the crowned hornbill’s crown is, is not immediately obvious – am I missing it because I am colourblind, or does it refer to the ridge on its beak?


    • It is that ridge or casque on the beak – this is why I included this bird in the ‘crowned collection’ – which is not what we expect πŸ™‚ Gekroonde Neushoringvoel doesn’t help us much either! Its crest is usually flat.

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