The Malabar pied hornbill (Anthracoceros coronatus), also known as lesser pied hornbill, is a bird in the hornbill family, a family of tropical near-passerine birds. The Malabar pied hornbill is a large hornbill, at 65 cm (26 in) in length. It has mainly black plumage, apart from its white belly, throat patch, tail sides and trailing edge to the wings. The bill is yellow with a large, mainly black casque. Females have white orbital skin, which the males lack. Male has a creamy white large bill with black base, and a huge ivory yellow and black casque with projecting front end, red eye with black bare skin, female is smaller with bare skin around eye pale blue, becoming pink during breeding season. Juveniles have no casque. It might be confused with the oriental pied hornbill. The Malabar pied hornbill is a common resident breeder in India and Sri Lanka. Its habitat is evergreen and moist deciduous forests, often near human settlements.
This species is omnivorous, taking fruits, small mammals, birds, small reptiles, insects etc. Prey is killed and swallowed whole. Figs are an important food, contributing 60% of their diet from May to February, the non-breeding season; during breeding, in March and April, up to 75% of the fruits delivered at the nest were figs. They also feed on other fruits, including those of the Strychnos nux-vomica, which are toxic to many vertebrates. In central India, tribal peoples believed Although its name suggests that it is restricted to the Western Ghats, it is found in two regions of India: one population in the forests of central (Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh) and eastern India (Bihar, Orissa), and another in the foothills of the Western Ghats in parts of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Another population is found in Sri Lanka. Some tribes believed that hanging a skull of the hornbill (known as dhanchidiya) brought wealth. It is classified as Near Threatened by IUCN.
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