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Palm-nut Vulture | Gypohierax angolensis

The Palm-nut Vulture is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Accipitridae bird family group which includes birds such as Raptors, Old Vultures, Osprey.

The description for the Palm-nut Vulture (Latin name Gypohierax angolensis) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Gypohierax angolensis can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 147 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 483. You will find a picture of the Palm-nut Vulture on page 481.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.

There have been no changes in the common name between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Palm-nut Vulture between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Palm-nut Vulture is known in Afrikaans as Witaasvo?l.

The Palm-nut Vulture has a height of 60 cms and weighs around 1500 gms. The head is coloured cream while the bill is coloured yellow. The Gypohierax angolensis has a white coloured throat, yellow legs and a cream coloured back. The eyes are yellow.

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is cream

Eyes are yellow

Bill is yellow

Legs are yellow

Throat is white

Back is cream

Feeding Habits ...

The Palm-nut Vulture is usually seen hunting for food within the tree foliage

The diet includes small mammals such as rabbits, field mice and other rodents. Rodents are usually taken from the ground and killed using the sharp claws. The Palm-nut Vulture uses its hard bill to tear up the flesh.

The Gypohierax angolensis forages mainly on the ground or at the base of trees, and low down in the shrubs eating mostly fruits and seeds.

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Palm-nut Vulture is a monogamous bird which means that the bird finds and breeds with one partner for the rest of its life. The bird lays between 1 eggs and they are coloured white.

The nest is built high up in the tree canopy and is protected from predators by branches and the dense green foligae.

The bird is at home in riverine forests and close to water bodies such as lakes, dams and streams

You can see the Palm-nut Vulture bird on coastal regions and on the sea shore where the bird will be foraging with other birds

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Palm-nut Vulture is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.

This bird is usually seen in small family groups or in large flocks

The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition * edited by PAR Hockey, WRJ Dean and PG Ryan, published by "The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund."

copyright: Tony Roocroft +27-11-454-0105

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