Family Hornbills (Bucerotidae)


Brown-cheeked Hornbill (Bycanistes cylindricus)


French: Calao à joues brunes German: Braunwangen-Hornvogel Spanish: Cálao caripardo

Buceros cylindricus


, 1831,

Cape Coast, West Africa (Ghana)


Hitherto considered conspecific with B. albotibialis. Monotypic.


Sierra Leone, S Guinea, Liberia, Ivory Coast and Ghana; unconfirmed record from Togo.

Descriptive notes

60–70 cm; one female 921 g. Medium-sized to large black hornbill with white rump, tail-coverts and belly, broad white trailing edge to wings, white tail with broad... read more


A series of hoarse, nasal, descending barks “rrah...rrah...rrah...rrah...” or “rack kack kak-kak-... read more


Extensive stands of tall lowland evergreen primary and mature secondary forest, but locally in very... read more

Food and feeding

Diet not as well known as that of formerly conspecific B. albotibialis, but said to feed mainly on insects during the post-... read more


Very poorly known. Probably lays mainly in Sept–Nov in Liberia, when males can be seen alone, and in Ghana observed taking food to... read more


Generally sedentary, but is apparently nomadic during non-breeding season in Liberia, in flocks of... read more

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Formerly considered Near Threatened. Probably the most threatened African hornbill. Restricted to Upper Guinea forests, where it occurs in S Guinea, Sierra Leone... read more

Recommended citation

Kemp, A.C., Kirwan, G.M. & Boesman, P. (2019). Brown-cheeked Hornbill (Bycanistes cylindricus). 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 16 November 2019).