The South African Bird Ringing Unit

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Southern Ground Hornbill Research and Conservation Project

Researcher/s: Kate Carstens, Peter Ryan, Rob Little,

Project Webpage


Species: Southern Ground-hornbill (Bucorvus leadbeateri (=cafer))
Location: Klaserie, Timbavati, Umbabat and Balule PNR, Mpumalanga, South Africa
Click to view sighting map
Running From: 2006 to 2017
Ring Type: Legring: colour combination
Colour Combination: 3 colours per bird


Southern Ground-Hornbills Bucorvus leadbeateri are globally Vulnerable, but their conservation status in South Africa has been up-listed to Endangered. They have experienced a two-thirds reduction in their national area of occupancy, and due to high site fidelity their population size as well, in the past 100 years. They have been on the South African research agenda for decades, mainly thanks to the efforts of Dr Alan Kemp. Since 2000, they have been the focus of a study at the FitzPatrick Institute, UCT, largely to inform activities of the Mabula Ground-Hornbill Project (MGHP) and the national Ground-Hornbill Action Group who are our partners in implementing the national Species Recovery Plan. Our study area is the Associated Private Nature Reserves (APNR) adjacent to the central Kruger National Park.

To help us with data on current populations and breeding sites please send any records of groups and active nesting sites, particularly outside protected areas, to Lucy Kemp at project@ground-hornbill.org.za. For more information on the Mabula Ground-Hornbill Project visit http://www.ground-hornbill.org.za/. Kate Carstens maintains a Facebook page on the APNR Ground-Hornbill Project at https://www.facebook.com/GroundHornbillResearch.