Friday, 24 November 2017

THE FAMOUS BIRDS OF UGANDA


The Shoebill 
The shoe bill is also known as the Whalehead or Shoebilled stork. It gets this name from its huge shoe-shaped bill.
It is a large grey wetland-dweller distantly related to the pelicans, and one of the endemic bird species in Uganda that occupy the marshy lands of the Nile River below Murchison falls and Lake Albert, in Semuliki and the swamps surrounding Lake Opeta in Soroti district. However, a tour to Mabamba wetland on the shores of L. Victoria can also avail endless chances to view the illusive Shoe bill stork. 

The shoebill is well known for its slow movements and the tendency to stand still for long periods making it to be described as the specie that is “statue-like”. The shoebill is also sensitive to human disturbance and it in most cases abandons its nest in case it detects unsafe conditions.
The shoebill is a predator to a number of a considerable range of wetland vertebrates including its preferred prey, the marbled lungfish, Tilarpia and the catfish, other preys that are eaten by this bird are; frogs, water snakes, Nile monitors, baby crocodiles, snails and others.

The Ostrich 
The Ostrich is a large flightless bird native to the African continent. This is the only living bird of the genenus struthio family. The bird is distinctive in its appearance with a long neck and legs and it’s also known for running long distances of up to 70 km/h with the fastest land speed of any bird.
The ostrich is also the largest bird species and lays the largest eggs of any bird. Ostrich lives in groups of 5 to 50 birds. The ostrich can also weigh up to 145 kilograms making it hard to fly. The only bird that has two toes on each foot.
The ostrich in most cases are commonly found in the dry, hot savannah and woodlands of Africa but also can be found in all over the world in museums and zoos.
The unique fact about the ostrich is that it is omnivores, meaning it eats both vegetables and meat although in most cases it prefers plants like the roots, seeds, and also the leaves. 
In Uganda the ostrich is found in Kidepo valley national park in the north east of Uganda in the Karamoja region, and it can be viewed during wildlife safaris in Uganda.

The Crested Crane 
This bird is also known as the grey crowned crane, it is Uganda’s national bird. It is about 1.1m tall, grey with white feather and a unique golden crest. It is a quiet bird mostly found in swamps and also enjoys being in moist areas, near rivers or lakes.
The crane is definitely a great beauty. Its height can go over 3 feet tall when standing straight. This bird is characterized by long-slender black legs and considerable large neck and body. 
crane cranes can be viewed in various protected areas and a birding safari in Uganda can avail endless opportunities to view these gentle birds; areas include Queen Elizabeth national park and Murchison Falls national park. 


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