Luzon Hornbill

Penelopides manillae

Red List Status: LC – Least Concern (IUCN 2020)

Photo by Con Foley

Distribution: Endemic to the Philippines; occurs on the island of Luzon and some adjacent islands.

Description: 45 cm. Male 395-470 g; female 470-475 g. Small-sized hornbill; male has creamy white head and underparts; upperparts, vent and cheeks dark brown; tail black with pale brown band; bill is prominently ridged; pink facial skin and red eyelids. Females all black except for pale tail band and blue around eyes and gular area; juveniles like respective adults except for smaller dull brown bill. 

Voice: The call has been described as a loud, clear, short squeak like a child’s squeeze-toy or a trumpeting toot-toot, tut-tut

Audio from xeno-canto

Habits: Occurs in primary dipterocarp rainforest and riverine forest, mainly in the lowlands up to 900 m elevation. Exposed to severe habitat destruction, but P. m. subnigra tolerates disturbance and adapts to secondary growth and agro-forests. It feeds on a wide range of fruits and will visit single fruiting trees in nearby grassland to feed. The food is mainly fruits, of at least 36 indigenous and cultivated plant species, but it prefers indigenous species, for instances Moraceae (Ficus spp, Artocarpus), Buseraceae (Canarium spp), Lauraceae (Litsea sp, and Cinnamomum sp), Meliaceae (Dysozylum spp) Myrtaceae (Syzygium spp), Arecaceae (Cocos cumingii, Livistonia rotundifloriae, Pinanga insignis); also takes insects (beetles) and other small animal food (bird eggs and nestlings, lizards). It appears to be sedentary and territorial; moves in small groups of up to 15 individuals.