Family Hornbills (Bucerotidae)

Least Concern

Indian Grey Hornbill (Ocyceros birostris)


French: Calao de Gingi German: Keilschwanztoko Spanish: Cálao gris indio

Buceros birostris


, 1786,

Pondicherry, India




NE Pakistan (Punjab), S Nepal and NW Bangladesh S through most of India (except SW & E coasts).

Descriptive notes

50 cm; male 375 g. Small, silvery-grey and white hornbill, tail long and graduated with dark and light tip. Male has blackish bill and narrow casque, latter with protruding... read more


A series of well-spaced high-pitched penetrating squeals, sometimes given in rapid succession.


Deciduous woodland, parkland and open thorn-forest, especially among scattered fig trees and in... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly small fruits, especially figs; also takes various insects, lizards, mice and nestlings; rarely, flower petals. Flies from tree to... read more


Little known. Lays mainly in Feb or May–Jun, at end of dry season. Possibly co-operative at times, with additional male helpers. Nest... read more


Generally resident, except for some local movements to keep track of fruiting trees; at such times... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Widespread, and often common in wide range of habitats. Extensive range includes several reserve areas. Also co-exists well with human rural... read more

Recommended citation

Kemp, A.C., de Juana, E. & Boesman, P. (2019). Indian Grey Hornbill (Ocyceros birostris). 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 15 September 2019).