Family Storks (Ciconiidae)

Least Concern

Saddlebill (Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis)


French: Jabiru d’Afrique German: Sattelstorch Spanish: Jabirú africano
Other common names: Saddle-bill Stork

Mycteria senegalensis


, 1800,





Tropical Africa from Senegal E to Eritrea and Ethiopia and S to NE South Africa.

Descriptive notes

145–150 cm; 6 kg; wingspan 240–270 cm. Males average considerably larger; both sexes have bare crimson medal on breast. Genus Ephippiorhynchus unique... read more


Silent away from the nest, practically mute. At nest, adults perform bill-clattering during display... read more


Varied aquatic habitats, preferably large scale, such as marshes, wet grassland, margins of large... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly fish of up to at least 500 g; including lungfish. It also takes crabs, shrimps, frogs, reptiles, small mammals, young birds and a... read more


Mostly starts late in rains or in dry season; may be timed for young to leave nest at end of dry season. Solitary tree nester; large,... read more


Basically sedentary, with some nomadic movements within or near home territory, in search of... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Widespread, but usually uncommon. Pairs occupy large home ranges and so the species typically occurs at low densities. The population... read more

Recommended citation

Elliott, A., Garcia, E.F.J. & Boesman, P. (2018). Saddlebill (Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis). 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 21 August 2018).