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Mabula Ground Hornbill Project

Southern Ground Hornbills are considered 'vulnerable' but their numbers are still declining. A detailed analysis of data collected by the Project, show Southern Ground Hornbills in South Africa to be endangered' and probably critically endangered under IUCN Criteria. There are probably only 1500 birds in South Africa, half of which are in the protected areas of the Kruger National Park. Groups consist of 2- 9 birds, of which there is only 1 breeding female. An average of only 1 chick is raised to adulthood every 9 years.

Over the past 50 years Ground Hornbills have lost over 70% of their natural habitat.

The Mabula Ground Hornbill Research and Conservation Project are addressing these issues by harvesting and hand-rearing the second hatched chicks which will ordinarily be abandoned once the first egg hatched.

The Johannesburg Zoo is involved in hand raising the harvested chicks and providing veterinary care to the birds.


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