Magpie Shrike

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Perched on the outer branches of a thorny bush, the magpie shrike scans its surroundings for grasshoppers, lizards and other small prey. The shrike often displays cooperative breeding, whereby young from the previous brood remain at their natal nest to help the breeding pair raise the next clutch.

 

Lanner Falcon

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The lanner falcon is one of the few birds of prey to hunt cooperatively. One falcon flushes up a pigeon or other small bird from its hiding place; then the other swoops in to catch it. Instead of diving after prey like a peregrine falcon does, the lanner falcon flies in horizontally, reaching speeds up to 90 mph.

Rüppell’s Vulture

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Native to Africa, the Ruppell’s vulture is a large bird that has a beak powerful enough to break and crunch bones. This is essential for survival since they feed solely on dead animals. Vultures can often be seen flying overhead as they spend much of their day soaring high looking for food.

Lappet-faced Vulture

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With a wingspan up to nine feet wide, the lappet-faced vulture is the largest vulture in Africa. Its name comes from the folds of skin on either side of its neck called lappets. These powerful birds are able to scare most other birds and even some mammals away when protecting a carcass on which it is feeding.

Ostrich

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As the world’s largest and heaviest living bird, the ostrich can’t fly to get away from predators, but it sure can run fast—up to 40 miles per hour! It can also deliver a powerful kick, if a predator gets too close.

Micronesian Kingfisher

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A forest-dwelling bird, the Micronesian kingfisher swoops down from its perch in a tree to snatch up insects, crustaceans and lizards in its large bill.

Salmon-Crested Cockatoo

SALMON CRESTED COCKATOO

Cockatoos are noisy, flocking parrots that live in Australia, Indonesia, and nearby islands. They are characterized by a large, feathered head crest that they raise in alarm or excitement. Strong, curved bills are used to crack seeds and eat insects and fruits. 

 

Lady Ross’ Turaco

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Turacos rarely come down from the forest canopy. They rapidly run along vines and branches squirrel-style. Their two outer toes rotate backwards for better gripping, and their long tails help with balance.

Nicobar pigeon

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The colorful Nicobar pigeon has such a strong, hooked bill that it can crack open nuts that would require a hammer for a human. They also feed on fruit and various invertebrates found among the leaf litter on the wooded islands they inhabit. Hunting and habitat loss are threatening the species’ survival.


 

Hamerkop

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Wading in shallow water, the hamerkop rakes its bill along the bottom in search of frogs and fish. Every so often, the bird flaps its wings to flush prey out of hiding. It also hunts on the fly. Spotting prey from above, the hamerkop dives down to scoop it up.