Turacos are seen frequently in the protected forest by Footsteps but in all the years I’ve been here I don’t recall them being photographed much. Imagine my delight when two of our featured regular photographers presented me with images of both the Violet and Green Turaco. If any of our past guests have taken photos of these beautiful birds, please send them in and I can update this post with more images for your enjoyment!

Violet Turaco ©Rob Carr
Green Turaco ©Emyr Evans

Bird information.

Where can we see Violet & Green Turacos?

The Turacos pictured above were photographed inside Koonfung Protected Forest next to Footsteps but can be seen across The Gambia in forest areas with plenty of tall trees.

What do Violet Turacos look like?

These are unmistakable birds, but shy and often inconspicuous in the treetops. They are approximately 48 cm long, including a long tail and a 4 cm bill. They boast a wing length of 21 cm and weigh approximately 360 g. The plumage is glossy violet, except for the yellow forehead, chestnut crown and white ear coverts; the bill is thick and red. In flight, the violet turaco’s crimson primary flight feathers contrast with the violet plumage. The red colour in the wings is typical of turacos. Source Wikipedia

What does a Green Turaco look like?

The Green Turaco, often inconspicuous in the treetops, is approximately 40–43 cm long, including a long tail. The weight can reach 225–290 g. The plumage is largely brilliant green and blue and the tail and wings are dark purplish, except for the crimson primary feathers that are very distinct in flight. On the head is present an erectile semi-circular green crest. On the eyes there are red and white patches. The bill is thick and red. Source Wikipedia

What do they feed on?

They both love fruit, particularly figs, but will also eat snails, slugs and most insects as well as flowers such as Moringa.

Want to know an interesting Factoid?

Neither of these birds fly particularly well, preferring instead to climb through the tall trees away from the lens of eager photographers, which explains why we don’t see so many photos of them.

How do they sound?

Green Turacos have a loud repeated cawr cawr call while Vioet Turacos have a  loud cooroo cooroo call.

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