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Scopus umbretta


The shape of its head with a curved bill and crest at the back is reminiscent of a hammer, hence its name. The strangest aspect of Hamerkop behavior is the huge nest, sometimes more than 1.5 m across, comprising perhaps 10,000 sticks and strong enough to support a man's weight.


By a river.


See a picture of the nest here:

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RachaelB 9 years ago

That's what makes it even stranger they are only medium-sized birds (56 cm long, weighing 470 g).

Stian Waaler
Stian Waaler 9 years ago

Great picture!

Maria dB
Maria dB 9 years ago

Are they large birds? Very interesting about the nests.

RachaelB 9 years ago

I know it's so weird. Apparently they build 3 to 5 nests per year whether they are breeding or not. Guess it keeps them busy (and I bet all the other birds that make use of their nests quite like their compulsive behaviour!)

LisaFP 9 years ago

Interesting info on the nest size! I wonder why they make them so large?!

Sachin Zaveri
Sachin Zaveri 9 years ago

Very nice ..

Spotted by

Mpumalanga, South Africa

Spotted on Jan 21, 2012
Submitted on Mar 3, 2012

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