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Hoopoes return to Paradise
The Hoopoe is about the size of a Blackbird, cinnamon in colour with striking black and white stripes on their wings and tail feathers
The Hoopoe is about the size of a Blackbird, cinnamon in colour with striking black and white stripes on their wings and tail feathers

It has been more than seven years since Paradise Park in Hayle last held the Hoopoe in their collection.

The Hoopoe is so named after the sound that it makes.

This bird is widespread in Europe, Asia, and North Africa but they don't breed in the wild in the UK.

Birds migrating to Europe from Africa can sometimes overshoot and land on the south coast of England, causing as many as 100 birds to turn up during springtime.

The youngsters [we had] went to other zoos and collections and so after a while we found the remaining adult pairs just died of old age
Curator David Woolcock

The Hoopoe is about the size of a Blackbird, cinnamon in colour with striking black and white stripes on their wings and tail feathers, a long black down-curved bill and a crown of feathers which it raises when excited.

They nest in cavities in rocks, trees and buildings and feed on the ground, searching for insects, worms, small reptiles and other creatures.

Curator David Woolcock explains "We previously had four pairs of Hoopoe which bred very well.

"Sometimes they would have four clutches of eggs a year, so up to 16 chicks.

"We think they breed at this high rate due to the fact that they are short lived to only about five years old.

"The youngsters went to other zoos and collections and so after a while we found the remaining adult pairs just died of old age.

"Since then I have been looking to see if we could find a pair to start breeding these again, and fortunately two zoos in Belgium had a male and female, so we are happy to report that Hoopoes are back at Paradise Park."




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