The Hamerkop (Scopus umbretta), also known as Hammerkop,Hammerkopf, Hammerhead, Hammerhead Stork, Umbrette, Umber Bird, Tufted Umber, or Anvilhead, is a medium-sized wading bird (56 cm long, weighing 470 g). The shape of its head with a curved bill and crest at the back is reminiscent of a hammer, hence its name. [Wikipedia]

The Hamerkop is known in some cultures as the lightning bird, and the Kalahari Bushmen believe or believed that being hit by lightning resulted from trying to rob a Hamerkop’s nest. The Lightning Bird is a mythological creature in the folklore of South Africa. It is said to summon thunder and lightning with its wings and talons.

Hamerkops feed during the day, normally alone or in pairs. They eat amphibians, fish, shrimp, insects and rodents.
A Hamerkop nest can be as big as 1.5 m across and strong be enough to support a man’s weight.


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