Family Bustards (Otididae)

Near Threatened

Blue Bustard (Eupodotis caerulescens)


French: Outarde plombée German: Blautrappe Spanish: Sisón azulado
Other common names: Blue Korhaan

Otis Cærulesens

[sic] Vieillot

, 1820,

“Kaffraria” = Eastern Cape Province, South Africa


In the past, this species sometimes isolated in a monotypic genus, Trachelotis. Monotypic.


E South Africa from Mpumalanga S to Free State and Eastern Cape; also W Lesotho.

Descriptive notes

55 cm; 1120–1612 g. Only bustard with blue-grey neck and underparts. Female has duller grey neck and buff ear-­coverts. Immature has black and buff crown, black on... read more


Calls mainly at dawn. Gives a deep, throaty, two-syllabled 'krok kau' that is often taken... read more


High grassveld, usually above 1500 m, with short-grazed grassland and termite mounds but no or few... read more

Food and feeding

Caterpillars, grasshoppers, beetles, scorpions and small reptiles; also grass seeds, flowers and green leaves of various plants. In winter... read more


Aug–Apr, chiefly Oct–Nov. Nest situated on bare open ground, often in short, thick grass, also in old cropland. Eggs 1–3... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. CITES II. Currently considered Near Threatened. Reported decline in S and W of range unfounded, although now fairly scarce in lowland Lesotho owing... read more

Recommended citation

Collar, N. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2019). Blue Bustard (Eupodotis caerulescens). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 26 June 2019).