Purple-crested Turaco… one SOB to capture..

Purple-crested Turaco (Tauraco porphyreolophus)

I’ve always known this bird as one of the Lourie family, but somewhere down the line it became a Turaco… so we will go with that. This bird is the National Bird of the Kingdom of Swaziland. The crimson flight feathers of this and related Turaco species are important in the Ceremonial Regalia of the SiSwati Royal Family. I’ve never captured this bird in flight so I borrowed this photo from the web… thanks web…


This bird has a purple coloured crest above a green head, a red ring around their eyes, and a black bill. The neck and chest are green and brown. The rest of the body is purple, with red flight feathers.

trip 216

But this bird is so damn difficult to capture on camera… well it is for me… I hear the other birds saying “Oh it’s easy!!” well not for me…

trip 218

But this one did co-operate … for a change and I got some captures … finally… They live in moist woodland and evergreen forests, and they eat mainly fruits.

trip 217

trip 213

trip 209

trip 199

55 thoughts on “Purple-crested Turaco… one SOB to capture..

  1. What a beautiful bird and you’ve captured it so well bulldog. Thanks for sharing and for all the lovely info on it. I am learning more and more. 😀

  2. It really does look like a loerie! Is this similar to the Knysna loeries? I know they also have some red/orange coloured flight feathers with the olive green camo for when they’re sitting down to eat.

    • Bad news for you… the Knysna is no longer known as a lourie, it is now also a turaco… please don’t ask me why… I’ve known all the birds as louries for 55 odd years when I started birding… and now they decide to change the name…

  3. Well however difficult it was to take the pictures, it was well worth the effort. The one that stands out for me is the 2nd one of the larger images (trip 218), the way its head is looking at you with the leaves just behind it.

    • Thanks Chris.. this is not a bird easily captured by anyone and even one of our top photographers says she still has not been able to get a photo after 30 years… so I was lucky and I do agree the second one is my favourite…

    • Thanks TBM.. has taken me till now in my life to capture these photos… hope to get one in flight before I die… damn it is not a cooperative bird… just when you’ve got yourself positioned near a tree where you can see it but not photo it, you know it’s about to fly over your head, then the SOB turns 180 and goes the other way…

  4. Now thats some bird you got Bulldog. Awesome pictures – well done! BTW,
    I hope to get a pic of “Coo” and that you could identify the species? See my Facebook page posting.

  5. When I traveled around Amazon, there was this one river where you’d go down on it for a few miles until this vast tree area. Around 5 pm, you can see hundreds of red birds coming home from their rendez-vous. It was one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen, that first picture reminded me of it.
    First time visiting your blog, I liked it!
    Keep up the good work.
    — Thay

    • Thank you Thay.. for the visit and the comment… there is so much beauty in our birds if we just take the time to look up and see them… and of course there is more pleasure when one can capture them with a camera… thank you again…

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