Birds are categorized into Maniraptora which is a clade of dinosaurs. Now, you can call birds modern dinosaurs. Nature has given birds hollow bones in order to make them lightweight so they can fly. The secondary reason is it aids in breathing during flight. Birds are one of the most amazing creatures on earth and African Birds are unique in adapting to the environment for survival. Here is the list of the top 10 African birds in the world.
1.Grey Crowned Crane
Grey Crowned Crane is one of the colourful African birds also known as the African crowned crane, golden crested crane, golden-crowned crane, East African crane, East African crowned crane, Eastern crowned crane and South African crane. The bird species belongs to the crane family Gruidae and mostly seen in the regions of eastern and southern Africa. This is also listed as the national bird of Uganda and closely related to the black-crowned crane. The Grey Crowned Crane can grow upto 1 m (3.3 ft) tall with an avarage wieght of 3.5 kg (7.7 lbs) and has a total wingspan of 2 m (6.5 ft). Talking about the appearance, The body and plumage is grey in colour and the wings are white in colour. The feathers has multiple ranges of colors along with a distinctive black patch at the very top. The avarage lifespan is 22 years in the wild.
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Shoebill is a unique bird that can be easily identified because they have features that are characteristic of genetically unrelated types of birds such as storks, pelicans, hamerkop and herons. It is also known as Whale-head or Shoe-billed Stork and can only be seen in the eastern parts of Africa from Sudan to Zambia. It loves to thrive in marshes, swamps and wetlands. Shoebill is a large bird that can grow upto 5 feet tall along with 4 feet long with an avarage wieght of 1.5 pounds in weight. Talking about the appearance, the body of the bird is covered with bluish-grey plumage and have a strong neck, long legs and broad wings. The avarage lifespan is 35 years in the wild. The diet includes types of fish, amphibians, lizards, snakes, rats and even baby crocodiles.
Common Ostrich is also known as Ostrich is a non-flying largest bird that lives in Africa. Male, female and young ostriches come in different colors where males are identified by black and white colour. The females and young are usually greyish, brownish and white. The bird species can survive without water for a longer period of time because it can absorb water from the food they eat. It is also listed as the fastest running bird in the world and can run faster than lions or leopards. They are known to have very strong legs and one kick can kill a lion. The varage lifespan of the bird species is 30-70 years in the wild.
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The flamingo is one of the most beautiful African birds in the world known for its red-purple coloured feather. It loves to thrive in shallow lakes, mangrove swamps and sandy islands. They are mostly seen in the islands of Africa, Asia, America and Europe. As of now, 6 species of flamingos has been known to humans with an avarage hieght of 3.3 – 4.6 feet tall and wieght of 3.3 – 9 pounds. The total wingspan of bird species ranges from 3.3 – 5 feet. The red-purple coloured feather is a result of pigments in their food known as carotenoids and they are responsible for the red and pink colors of their feathers. The avarage lifespan is 20 and 30 years in the wild.
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Vultures are one of the largest birds of prey with the head and neck more or less bare of feathers. As of now, 23 species of Vultures are known to humans and known for excellent senses of sight and smell. Talking about the apperance, they have bare heads and often bare necks that helps them to feed on rotting carcasses, bacteria and other parasites cannot burrow into thick feathers to cause infections. It used to pee on the legs in order to cool them off in hot weather. The avarage lifespan of the bird species is 10 to 30 years in the wild. It can grow upto 56 to 74 cm in length with an avarage wieght of 1.2 to 1.9 kg. The wingspan varies depending on the species of the vulture.
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Secretarybird is one of the large bird of prey mostly seen in the regions of Sub-Saharan Africa. It prefers to thrive in semi-deserts, forests and farmlands. The bird species can grow upto 4 to 5 feet in height with an avarage wieght of 5 to 9 ½ pounds of weight. Talking about the apperance, the upper part of the body is grey in colour and the bottom side of the body and flight feathers are black in colour. The facial skin is orange in colour along with a beak which is bluish-grey. The backside of the body has long and erect black feathers that are on the backside of the neck. The wingspan of the bird is 7 feet and they really fly even though they are proficient in the air. The avarage lifespan is 20 years in captivity.
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Marabou Stork belongs to the family Ciconiidae and can grow upto 150 cm (59 in.)The avarage wieght of the bird species is up to 9 kg (20 lbs.)The primary diet includes carrion, fish, termites, locusts, frogs, lizards, baby crocodiles, snakes, rats, mice, and birds. The incubation period of the bird species is 30 to 50 days with a clutch size of 3 to 5 eggs. The varage lifespan of the bird species is 20 years in captivity and life in the wild is unknown. It prefers to thrive in dry savannas, grasslands, swamps, riverbanks, lakeshores, and receding pools where fish are concentrated. They have a hollow leg and toe bone and this is important for adaptation of flight.
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Image Source: Wikimedia
Yellow-Billed Storks is also known as a wood stork or wood ibis is one of the beautiful African birds that belong to the family Ciconiidae. The bird species are mostly seen in the regions the south of the Sahara and also occurs in Madagascar. The medium size stork species can grow upto 90 to 105 cm with an avarage wieght of 2.3 kg (5.1 lb) and 1.9 kg (4.2 lb) respectively. Talking about the appearance, they have a white body along with a short black tail that is glossed green and purple when freshly moulted. The bird species is carnivorous and primarily feeds on small fish, frogs, insects and worms. The natural predators are cheetahs, leopards, lions, and humans. It is mostly seen in the regions of East Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Madagascar.
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Saddle-billed stork is also known as saddlebill belongs to the stork family Ciconiidae.One of teh beautiful African birds is mostly seen in the regions of Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya south to South Africa, and in The Gambia, Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire and Chad in west Africa. The bird species is endangered in South Africa and it is very close relative to Asian and Australian black-necked stork. The bird is huge that can achieve a hieght of 145 to 150 cm (4 ft 9 into 4 ft 11 in) along with a length of 142 cm (4 ft 8 in) and a total wingspan of 2.4 to 2.7 m (7 ft 10 into 8 ft 10 in) wingspan. It is also listed as the tallest stork in the world.
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Pelican is one of the amazing African birds that can be seen on all continents except Antarctica. As of now, eight species of pelicans are known to humans and prefer to thrive in warm regions, near rivers, estuaries, and lakes. One of the largest birds in the world can reach 4 and 6 inches in length with an avarage of 10 and 30 pounds of weight. Pelicans has the largest bill of all birds that can reach 18 inches in length. The bird species can be easily recognized by its large body along with short legs and a wingspan of 10 feet. The primary diet is fish mainly but they have also seen feeding on turtles, crustaceans, and tadpoles.
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These are the top 10 amazing African birds in the world. Kindly share and do post your comments.