Endangered Tarictic Hornbills bear young
In Vogelpark Avifuana (Netherlands), three Visayan Tarictic Hornbills hatched at the end of July. This is a special event: this species has never before been born on the European continent.
The Visayan Tarictic Hornbill (Penelopides Panini Panini) is found in the wild only on a few Philippine islands. It is one of the most endangered Hornbill species in the world: the wild population is estimated to be less than 1000 individuals. The greatest threats to this bird species are trade, hunting and deforestation. The Netherlands’ Vogelpark Avifauna and England’s Chester Zoo are working together on a project with the Philippine government to protect these birds and their habitat in the Philippines. In addition, these two zoos have begun a European breeding programme as a back-up for the wild population.
Since the birth of the young birds, the female has been walled in with them in a tree trunk in the Philippines hall of the bird park. In the wild, this walling-in behaviour is necessary to protect the young from predators. The female will leave the nest after one month. When the young are two months old, they emerge from the tree trunk and fly out. From the moment they fly out, their sex can be determined by observing their colour.