Bucerotidae – Hornbills

With a crown-like casque nestled on the head, they can easily pass for royalty among worldly birds

Known as “farmers of the forest” for their important role in planting tree seeds across the forest floor, they make up the most diverse family of the Bucerotiformes order (with their fellow Hoopoes). While the most striking feature about this brood has to be their breeding pattern, a well-planned division of duties between the mates that are nothing short of a defense mechanism mastery, Hornbills own several physical distinctions making them stand out.

Starting with a unique casque (a hollow structure present on a bird’s head), these birds have enough to gloat about in the animal kingdom, including an eye-catching, curved-down bill and a neck region so strong, they’ll give Grand Prix racers a run for their money! Besides, not many people know that Hornbills are the only birds with their first and second vertebrae fused to help them carry weight from their bill.