hoopoe

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hoopoe

(ho͞o`po͞o, –pō), common name for a shy, solitary, Old World woodland bird, Upupa epops. Its body color ranges from cinnamon to chestnut, with white-barred, black wings and tail, and a head topped by a prominent, erectile crest. Hoopoes measure from 10 1-2 to 12 in. (27–30 cm) bill to tail. They are primarily ground feeders and use their long, slender, decurved bills to probe for large insects, worms, and lizards. Less frequently, the hoopoe feeds while airborne, exhibiting its characteristic undulating erratic flight. Hoopoes are excellent runners. Found throughout the Old World, hoopoes frequent warm, dry areas, which are at least partially open. The northernmost members of the species, which reach the English Channel and the Baltic Sea, are migratory in winter. The nest is built in a tree cavity or a rock crevice, sometimes lined with debris, or sometimes bare. The female lays and incubates from four to six pale blue to olive colored eggs per clutch and is fed during incubation by her mate. Both sexes care for the naked, helpless young. In addition to its beautiful plumage, the hoopoe is also noted for its filthy, malodorous nest. The bad odor comes from a combination of putrefying excrement, which the bird does not trouble to remove, and from defensive musty-smelling secretions released from the preen gland of the female when she is disturbed. Woodhoopoes belong to the same family as the hoopoe. They are uncrested and are more gregarious than the hoopoe. Found only in the forests of Africa, woodhoopoes are metallic greens, blues, and purples in color, and travel in small, noisy groups. They share the same foul nesting habits as the hoopoes. Hoopoes and woodhoopoes are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Bucerotiformes (or, according to some authorties, Coraciiformes), families Upupidae and Phoeniculidae, respectively.

hoopoe

filthy bird; lines nest with dung. [Medieval Animal Symbolism: White, 150]

hoopoe

an Old World bird, Upupa epops, having a pinkish-brown plumage with black-and-white wings and an erectile crest: family Upupidae, order Coraciiformes (kingfishers, etc.)
References in periodicals archive ?
Those species expected to come across the channel in the next few decades include the hoopoe and bee-eater, colourful birds currently only found in southern Europe, Africa and parts of Asia.
Many of the artwork featured two hoopoes meeting in the shadows or in the fields, so we asked Abd El Karem about it.
Some birds such as hoopoe, red-backed shrike and wryneck are possible autumn visitors.
Before our cookery session, Jamie and I stretch our legs with a walk around the Kamarajar Lake, where we run across wild peacocks and hoopoes.
Other exotic birds reported include a black stork, a purple heron, more than 30 hoopoes, several European bee-eaters, red-rumped swallows and subalpine warblers.
Led by an owl reading a song-book and beating time with a twig, parrots, peafowl, hoopoes, magpies, a heron and a toucan join in what must be a distressing cacophony.
African Hoopoes stop off on their route north, Western Reef Herons are nesting in the trees at the bottom of the garden, and a couple of weeks ago I interrupted the important work of the British Embassy to drag the staff outside to witness the amazing aerial acrobatics of a flock of rainbow-coloured European Bee Eaters.
The display itself is strikingly similar to the rallying choruses performed by cooperatively breeding Green Wood Hoopoes (Phoeniculus purpureus), which function as territorial contests between neighboring groups (Radford 2003).
Storks are everywhere in spring, bee-eaters perch on phone wires and crested hoopoes peck insects from muddy roadsides.
ON THE BILL: Hoopoes straying from Europe' ESCAPE: Sunbird
And up the steps of the ziggurat I climb, the steps worn by five thousand years of pilgrimage, and there is the garden, and a table waiting with a carafe of sherbet, and my mother breaking bread as she did all hours of the day, breaking bread for the bee-eaters and orioles that live in the garden, flinging bread into the air and over the grass for the hoopoes that swoop and coo in the garden at the summit, the morning birds, the evening birds, bread falling over the ground like appleflowers as far as my mother can throw it, the bread flying around her head, and the orioles almost mechanical birds that circle her in the garden from where now I can see rivers stretching from horizon to horizon.