1567. Rhyticeros undulatus

(1567) Rhyticoros undulatus Shaw.
Rhyticoros undulatus, Fauna B. I., Birds, 2nd ed, vol. iv, p. 291.
This fine Hornbill is found in Assam South of the Brahmapootra, the hill-tracts of Eastern Bengal and thence over practically the whole of Burma, the Malay States to Singapore, Sumatra, Java and Borneo.
It is found in the plains and ascends the hills up to at least 5,000 feet and probably 2,000 feet higher. Robinson also records it at 5,000 feet on the main Selangor range near Gunong Ula Kali. It is a forest Hornbill and keeps much to thicker cover of tall trees but, sometimes, frequents the thinner, more open parts, especially those with any Fici in fruit.
In Assam I found several nests on the high ranges in the East of Cachar. Here at 5,000 feet the country was mostly very rugged and the forest consisted mainly of stunted Oak. Here and there were also small groups of an enormous kind of tree which stood,often on the ridges, dwarfing all the Oaks around them, and in these mighty trees the Wreathed Hornbill sometimes found a tree with a hole in it suitable for breeding.
Theobald had eggs brought to him in Sand away and Bingham took several in Tenasserim, all during March, while in the same month Hopwood took two eggs near Tavoy.
To describe this Hornbill’s breeding habits is merely to repeat what I have already written about the Great Hornbill. It has the same unfortunate habit, from the collector’s point of view, of selecting holes in trees at enormous heights from the ground, which holes it plasters up in the same manner with its own excre¬ment, remains of fruit etc.
March and April are the usual breeding months and, though I once took two eggs on the 6th June, the Nagas told me that they had previously taken two eggs from the same nest-hole in April.
Neither I, Bingham nor any other collector seems to have found more than two eggs in a nest, but the hill people told me that three eggs were sometimes laid, and this must be the case as I have seen three young with their parents.
The eggs are like those of the Great Hornbill and are just as coarse in texture, but the surface is not nearly so pimply and rough.
Twenty-five eggs average 63.0 x 43.2 mm. : maxima 72.1 x 43.7 and 69.9 x 47.1 mm. ; minima 49.5 x 88.0 mm.
In examining the material of which the wall round the entrance is made I found it full of small Fieus seeds, the male having evidently fed the female largely on these fruits. The masonry material remains soft for many hours after it has first been laid on the edges round the hole, but the birds never seem to damage or displace it in feeding or being fed, the edge always appearing neat and finished.

The Nidification Of Birds Of The Indian Empire
Baker, Edward Charles Stuart. The nidification of birds of the Indian Empire. Vol. 3. 1934.
Title in Book: 
1567. Rhyticeros undulatus
Spp Author: 
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Malayan Wread Hornbill
Wreathed Hornbill
Rhyticeros undulatus
Vol. 3

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