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AFRICAN SAFARIS - Trips Of A Lifetime

   
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African Hoopoe The Hoopoe's call gives the bird its descriptive Afrikaans name of Hoephoep. With a length of about 10 inches, the African Hoopoe is the size of a small dove and the male is somewhat larger than the female. They forage for insects, earthworms, frogs, lizards and small snakes while walking on ground.

The hoopoes nest in a natural hole in the ground, in a termite mound, a hollow in a pile of boulders, cavities in buildings, or a hollow tree. In this nest the female lays a clutch of between 2 and 6 pale blue or olive green eggs, which hatch after an incubation period that averages 17 days.

The hoopoe is thought to be the “lapwing” mentioned in the Old Testament, and one of the reasons that Moses thought it unfit for food was because of its nesting habits. In Ancient Egypt it was believed that the bird could detect water and would indicate where to dig a well. It was also believed to be able to cure many diseases. The hoopoe is the national bird of Israel. 
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