Wrinkled hornbill (Rhabdotorrhinus corrugatus)

wrinkled hornbill

In the aviary at the bottom of the wallaby walkthrough and next to Cold Blood Corner.

Fast facts

Status Near Threatened

Size 65-70cm

Weight Up to 1590g, males are larger than females

Gestation 29 days

Young 2-3

What do I eat?

Wrinkled hornbills eat a variety of lipid-rich drupes (fruits that have an outer skin, fleshy middle layer and a hard seed inside) and other fruits such as figs, they are even known to eat small animals when they are available.

These birds will search for food (forage) in the tallest trees (emergent trees) of the forest, and have even been known to pluck off items of food whilst flying!

Where do I live?

Wrinkled hornbills are found in different countries in south-east Asia, including the Sundaic lowlands of peninsular Thailand, Sabah, Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia, Kalimantan and Sumatra (including the Batu Islands), Indonesia and Brunei. They were once also found in Singapore, but are now extinct in this region.

They prefer to live in habitats that include primary evergreen and swamp forests up to 1,000m above sea level. They are not typically found in secondary forests (forests that have been disturbed either naturally or in man-made ways).


There is very little known about the breeding behaviours of wrinkled hornbills in the wild, many of their known behaviours are from observations of captive birds.

Much like other members of the hornbill family, wrinkled hornbills are monogamous (mate for life). To attract a mate, males have been seen to chase females and offer food during courtship displays.

The female builds a nest within a tree cavity and will seal herself inside using droppings and left over food to the hole. She will then lay 2-3 eggs (rarely 4) and incubate them for around 29 days. The male will make a small hole in the sealed opening to the nest in order to bring food for the female and any hatched chicks.

The chicks are ready to leave the nest (fledge) when they are 65-73 days old, and the male will break the seal to the nest to allow the female and fledglings to leave.


These birds have faced problems within certain areas of their range including illegal logging in protected areas, land conversion and forest fires. Wrinkled hornbills rely on undisturbed primary rainforest to thrive in, so these birds are greatly affected by damage to their habitat.

Although these birds are not considered to be threatened globally, they are now rarely seen in many areas of their original range of the Malay Peninsula. They can still be seen in greater numbers in other parts of their range, such as Sumatra.

Did you know?

Wrinkled hornbills have been known to fly across open sea.

These birds are usually seen in pairs, but have been known to be seen in groups of up to 30 individuals.


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Amazing day at Marwell zoo, topped by feeding the giraffes. Husband and I fed 7 giraffes by hand. I got sneezed on by kwame, the large male - brilliant!! Loved little Ruby. Very hands on. Not rushed at all. Thank you Megan, for making this an amazing experience for us both…Cathryn, 4th February 2016