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Animals

Kidadl Team

SEPTEMBER 01, 2021

21 Amaze-wing Facts About The Wood Hoopoe For Kids

Wood hoopoe facts are about these birds that have a long red beak.

The wood hoopoe and scimitarbills come from the same family of birds, both living in the south of Sahara. It's indeed very interesting how wood hoopoe shares relations with various other kinds of birds that you may see in your garden or a park. Kingfishers and various other such birds share a very close relationship with our African wood hoopoe. This Sub-Saharan Africa native shares many relations with various birds, given the nature of its stapes. Nonetheless, from a close look, it can be very evident that wood hoopoes are a very distinct group of family and cannot be confused with other birds. This species often love to live in groups and families of around 12-13.

These species have around two genera and six species. It's very intriguing how the ancient remains of these birds are found and discovered in regions of Europe but today this family of birds is confined to Africa. There are two sub-families of wood hoopoes, one of which lives in families (genus Phoeniculus), the other, and relatively smaller family lives only in pairs (genus Rhinopomastus).

To learn more about such mind-blowing facts don't forget to check out our common kingfisher facts and ivory-billed woodpecker facts pages

Wood Hoopoe Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a wood hoopoe?

A greenwood hoopoe phoeniculus is a type of bird and it has around six sub-species and two sub-families.

What class of animal does a wood hoopoe belong to?

A greenwood hoopoe belongs to the Aves class and is usually spotted in a group.

How many wood hoopoes are there in the world?

These red-billed species of birds were originally found in regions all across Africa, Asia, and Europe. However, today this family Phoeniculidae is restricted to only Sub-Saharan Africa. Inter-breeding and humans are factors that have very much impacted the population of wood hoopoes all across the world. At present date, there are around 6-10 million hoopoes present in the world. Although the exact count of the red bill or green wood hoopoe is yet not known, a brief idea can be developed seeing the general hoopoe population all across the globe.

Where does a wood hoopoe live?

The wood hoopoe (Phoeniculus purpureus) mostly resides in Sub-Saharan Africa in groups. The wood hoopoe range can be estimated to stretch as far as northeast Africa as well. The greenwood hoopoe phoeniculus of the family Phoeniculidae is found more in the northern region. Wood hoopoes are resident birds and do not migrate.

What is a wood hoopoe's habitat?

Wood hoopoes often find their home in natural tree holes. These birds occupy regions such as savanna, woodlands, and gardens. The groups also consider riverine forests as their home. A wood hoopoe habitat mainly consists of a tree hole where they nest and roost during a breeding season.

Who do wood hoopoes live with?

Wood hoopoes are very social birds and they often live in families of a dozen or so. A wood hoopoe (Phoeniculus purpureus) can be said to live with other hoopoes in their natural habitat. This species is also assumed to share their habitat with the shoebill and marabou stork.

How long does a wood hoopoe live?

An adult green wood hoopoe phoeniculus can live up to 10 years in the wild.

How do they reproduce?

Nests are mostly made in tree holes. It is very rare for this species to use holes in any building or ground. These species have monogamous breeding because these birds live in groups the males and the family take care of the female before egg-laying, during egg-laying, and post egg-laying. Adult group members provision and feed the female bird during this period. The wood hoopoe (Phoeniculus purpureus) forms their nest in abandoned nests by either woodpeckers or barbets. The female bird lays around two to five eggs that are either blue or gray in color, sometimes even olive.

What is their conservation status?

These birds have a status of Least Concern. This species is currently under no threat and enjoys a very secure population across Africa.

Wood Hoopoe Fun Facts 

What do wood hoopoes look like?

The wood hoopoe in general is a medium to small-sized bird and it comes in many colors. These species can range from green, purple to even black plumage with dark eyes. The bill is generally dark, but some species are also red-billed. Wood hoopoes have rounded wings and long tails. In most adults the bill is orange-red, females look similar to males but are a little dull. They have very long toes accompanied by small legs.

Shiny purple wings are common in the wood hoopoe.

How cute are they?

These birds come in many colors. Red-billed wood hoopoes are very magnificent and beautiful to watch.

How do they communicate?

These species produce many calls and vocalizations to communicate with one another. These species are often found to do song duels with their neighboring species during summers and spring.

How big is a wood hoopoe?

Wood hoopoes in general are medium-sized and cannot be considered very big birds. However, in comparison, a red-billed wood hoopoe is almost similar in size when compared with a healthy red-cockaded woodpecker.

When drawing a comparison between a Sub-Saharan Africa green wood hoopoe and a Gila woodpecker, the woodpecker is slightly bigger than our hoopoe. Even though a woodpecker and wood hooper look similar, they are from two different orders.

How fast can a wood hoopoe move?

One of the known wood hoopoe facts is these birds can move very fast. These birds can move very fast due to the help of their broad rounded wings.

How much does a wood hoopoe weigh?

An adult wood hoopoe can weigh anywhere between 0.11-0.19 lb (50-90 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

In wood hoopoes both sexes and breeding pair are addressed with the same name. Depending upon the sub-species of the wood hoopoe, you can either refer to them as wood hoopoe or through their assigned scientific name.

What would you call a baby wood hoopoe?

A green wood hoopoe baby stays with its parents for several months before leaving the nest. The young are normally called nestlings.

What do they eat?

Red-billed wood hoopoes mainly feed themselves on insects. This group of birds likes insects, their larvae, or even a few fruits that can be easily found in the ground. Small vertebrates also prove to be a good diet for these birds. Wood hoopoes have broader toes and strong legs that help to find prey in rotten tree barks while hanging upside down.

Are they dangerous?

No, green wood hoopoes are not dangerous to humans. These birds have been living around humans for a long time. Hoopoes are found all across Asia, in regions such as India and they prove to be very peaceful neighbors to humans.

Would they make a good pet?

Yes, the green wood hoopoe can be made a very good pet because these birds don't require a complex diet. A red bill wood hoopoe can even prove to be a symphony to your ears, as this native bird of Africa sings very well.

Did you know...

Hoopoes are incredible birds and are even found on high altitudes, as high as Mt. Everest in India.

These birds form their nest in those abandoned by other similar birds.

There are many ancient superstitions are surrounding the wood hoopoe.

A wood hoopoe is very similar to cuckoo in most regards. Both of these birds are onomatopoeic.

Hoopoes wish to live far away from farmlands because they are filled with pesticides.

How many babies do wood hoopoes have?

During the breeding season, the nest sees around two to four eggs, out of which generally three eggs hatch and stay in the nest for few months under the protection of their parents and the group.

What does the hoopoe symbolize?

In some cultures, a green wood hoopoe is considered to be a symbol of kingship and wisdom. As a solar symbol, it was believed that its body contains magical powers and medical properties.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our hoopoe facts and gray-faced buzzard pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable wood hoopoe coloring pages.

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