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Palm-nut vulture

Birds of Namibia

Introduction: Palm-nut vultures (Gypohierax angolensis) are uncommon and localized in Namibia and are linked to the presence of the Kosi Palm (Raphia australis) which grows near water bodies, often estuaries, freshwater lakes and swamps. They can be observed early morning in pairs, sunbathing and preening on the top of palm trees and other high vantage points.

Distribution: Scattered localities in the Caprivi, Etosha National Park and Swakopmund.

Diet: Eats mainly palm fruits. Also snatches fish, crabs, termites, roadkills such as birds, rodents, tree frogs, locusts, snails dung beetles and flying ants.

Description: Large, slender vultures with long, slender and pointed wings. They have small feet with sharp claws. Gypohierax is Greek for 'vulture and eagle'.

Breeding: A nest consists of a large platform of sticks lined with with dry grass, where only 1 large broad oval egg is laid and incubated for up to 47 days by both male and female.

Size: 60cm. Weight: 1.6kg.

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