November 20, 2015 – Bare-headed Rockfowl, White-necked Rockfowl, or White-necked Picathartes (Picathartes gymnocephalus)

These birds live in forests in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire, and Ghana, particularly in rocky areas. They eat invertebrates, plucking them from the ground and sometimes following army ants to hunt insects fleeing the swarms. Nesting in caves, on cliffs, and in hollow trees, they use mud and plants to build their nests, attaching them to a rock or branch, often near other pairs of rockfowl. Classified as Vulnerable by the IUCN, their low reproductive rate adds to the threats they face from nest predation and competition, as well as trapping and human disturbance. Their genus name, Picathartes, comes from words meaning magpie (pica) and vulture (cathartes).

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