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Hoopoe – Upupa epops

Hoopoe – Upupa epops
is a colourful bird found across Afro-Eurasia, notable for its distinctive “crown” of feathers. It is the only extant species in the family Upupidae. One insular species, the Saint Helena hoopoe, is extinct, and the Madagascar subspecies of the hoopoe is sometimes elevated to a full species. Like the Latin name upupa, the English name is an onomatopoeic form which imitates the cry of the bird. The hoopoe is the national bird of Israel.

They are monogamous, although the pair bond apparently only lasts for a single season, and territorial. The male calls frequently to advertise his ownership of the territory. Chases and fights between rival males (and sometimes females) are common and can be brutal. Birds will try to stab rivals with their bills, and individuals are occasionally blinded in fights.The nest is in a hole in a tree or wall, and has a narrow entrance. It may be unlined, or various scraps may be collected.

Formerly considered a single species, the hoopoe has been split into three separate species: the Madagascan hoopoe (U. marginata) as a separate species, and the resident African hoopoe U. africana. The morphological differences between the most commonly split subspecies, U. e. marginata, and the other subspecies are minor, and only U. e. marginata has distinctly different vocalisations. One accepted separate species, the Saint Helena hoopoe, U. antaios, lived on the island of St Helena but became extinct in the 16th century, presumably due to introduced species.

It sounds like this