ANIMAL: Violet/Violaceous Turaco Musophaga violacea Type of Animal: Turaco Habitat: Forests, humid forest edge, woodland (open & closed), savanna, wetlands, gallery forests/forest edges/forest borders/forest fringes along streams/other watercourses in savanna, gallery forests/forest edges/forest borders along drainage channels w/ large fruiting trees, parks/gardens w/ tall trees, suburban parks, cultivated land, found from sea level to 3,280.84 ft Location(s): W Africa from Senegal to Cameroon. Disjunct population on Chad-Central African Republic border. Appearance: Glossy violet plumage, yellow forehead, chestnut red crown, white ear coverts, thick red bill, red inner wings, very colorful, long tail, young have claws on wings for climbing, semi-zygodactyl feet of 4 toes (4th toe reversible) Food/Diet: Fruits (favorites are bananas/plantains, figs, African corkwood fruit, & waterberries), berries, seeds, flowers, buds, foliage, leaves, vegetables, insects, snails, slugs, grubs, insect larvae Status in Wild: Stable Conservation: Breeding in zoos, wildlife parks, & aviculture Lifestyle: Monogamous pairs or family flocks of monogamous pair w/ 1-4 sets of offspring (each w/ 1-3 birds). Older offspring act as helpers for younger offspring. Additional Info: Called: Male: Cock Female: Hen Young: Chick Group: Flock Weight: Male: 11.99 oz Female: 10.76 oz Gestation: 3.5-4 weeks Life Span: 10 years in wild, 30 years in captivity Height: 1.583 ft Body Length: 1.583 ft Tail Length: 0.5 ft Main predators are carnivorous/omnivorous mammals, predatory birds, crocodiles, snakes, & monitor lizards. Has loud cooroo-cooroo call. Due to frugivorous diet, they play an important role in seed dispersal. Fairly shy in wild but somewhat tame in captivity. 1-3 (typically 2) oval, grayish-white eggs laid in flimsy tree platform nest, usually 20 ft off ground. Sexually mature at a year old. Usually breed once a year. Despite coloration, they’re rather inconspicuous in wild due to camouflage. Courtship involves male bowing & wing spreading, followed by pair feeding together. Fun Fact(s): These birds can release feathers when caught/threatened. Greenish cast of feathers comes from unique pigment called turacoverdin. Turacin colors red feathers. In fact, name derives from turacin pigment. If immersed in water for 2-3 days, red feathers leach pigment & turn water pink. Sometimes kept as pets in parts of range. Also called “Violet/Violaceous Plantain Eaters” due to love of plantains. Rather weak fliers, preferring to hop from branch to branch.