The Conference Call of the Birds | Bar-Tailed Trogon
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Bar-Tailed Trogon

Bar-Tailed Trogon

National bird of Malawi

About This Bird

Bar-Tailed Trogon

Apaloderma vittatum


The Bar-Tailed Trogon is the representative of South East African nation, Malawi. It lives high up in the forests of Malawi (its preferred altitude is a whopping 1600 metres – that’s nearly a mile high!) and it can also be found in several other African countries such as Nigeria, Rwanda, Kenya and Mozambique.

This colourful bird is 28cm long with bright yellow feet and bill. The male has a blue black head, violet and green upper breast, bright red lower breast and a green back. The female is not dissimilar, with the exception of her light brown head and slightly duller cinnamon coloured lower breast.

The trogon’s distinctive song is a yelping crescendo which sounds like ‘yaow, yow yow yow’ or sometimes ‘wuk-wuk-wuk-wuk’. They eat soft insects, moths and caterpillars.

Like other Trogons the Bar-Tailed Trogon is part of the larger Trogonidae family, which contains 39 different species.