Rufous hornbill

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Rufous hornbill
Buceros hydrocorax eating.jpg
Buceros h. hydrocorax
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Bucerotiformes
Family: Bucerotidae
Genus: Buceros
B. hydrocorax
Binomial name
Buceros hydrocorax
Linnaeus, 1766
  • Buceros mindanensis Tweeddale, 1877

The rufous hornbill (Buceros hydrocorax), also known as the Philippine hornbill and locally as kalaw (pronounced kah-lau), is a large species of hornbill.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

It is endemic to the Philippines, where it occurs in primary, mature secondary and disturbed forests on 11 islands: Luzon and Marinduque (race hydrocorax), Samar, Leyte, Bohol, Panaon, Biliran, Calicoan and Buad (race semigaleatus), Dinagat, Siargao, Mindanao (plus Balut, Bucas and Talicud) and Basilan (race mindanensis). It is still common locally, notably in the Sierra Madre of Luzon, but continues to suffer from substantial hunting pressure and widespread loss of habitat. They are one of the largest birds in a tropical lowland forest (Clarido,2017)

Subspecies B. h. mindanensis; illustration by Joseph Smit, 1881


B. h. mindanensis, female in captivity

The bill of the nominate subspecies is entirely red, while the bill of the subspecies semigaleatus and mindanensis are pale yellow on the distal half.


It is sometimes called "the clock of the mountains" because of its periodic noontime call.[2]


As with other hornbills, females seal themselves within the nest cavity, where they lay the clutch, and remain with the growing young for most or all of the nesting period. In some species, the male helps with the sealing process from outside the nest cavity. The nestlings and the female are fed by the male through a narrow vertical slit in the sealed nest opening . ) [3] Nesting time will last in average of 4–6 months. In this duration the male will provide food to his confine female and nestling. They maintain the year- pair bonds and will paired together until many years’ time. And engage a courtship feeding. (Clarido, 2017)


  1. ^ Buceros hydrocorax, IUCN Red List, 2014
  2. ^ Ortiz, Margaux C. "Hornbills in the city: Clock ticking on nature's timekeeper". Philippine Daily Inquirer.
  3. ^ Witmer, Mark (1993). "Cooperative Breeding by Rufous Hornbills on Mindanao Island, Philippines" (PDF). The Auk. 110 (4): 933–936. doi:10.2307/4088652.
 4. Clarido, Aiza P. (2017). Dark-winged Clock: Hornbill