Southern Crested Guineafowl Guttera edouardi

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Identification

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A large-bodied, small-headed, black gamebird perfectly lined with rows of hundreds of bluish-white spots. It has a ridiculous-looking plumed “toupee” above the naked face, which features an ivory-colored bill and a blood-red eye. The facial skin color varies geographically, and can be mostly blue-gray with small patches of red and white, or predominantly blue-gray with a large white patch on the back of the neck. A broad band around the base of the neck is unspotted black. It prefers forest and thickets, where it forages on the ground for berries, seeds, and other plant matter. The similar Helmeted Guineafowl differs by its lack of feathered crest and its having a bone-like casque on top of the head instead. The alarm call is a series of rattling, agitated notes that speed up and slow down; similar to the call of Helmeted Guineafowl, but with a tinnier quality.

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