Roller, Racket-tailed



Coracias spatulata  


Subtly colored; has a vivid blue forward on edge of wings. Sexes are colored alike. Length is approximately 16 inches. Tail has an elongated pair of outer feathers ending in expanded tips that give this species its name.

Family

Coraciidae

Order

Coraciiformes

Class

Aves

Range

S. Angola, S.E. Zaire and through Zimbabwe to N.E. South Africa

Habitat

Open woodlands

Life Expectancy

Approximately 20 to 25 years

Sexual Maturity

2 years of age

Diet

In the wild, they eat insects such as flying ants, termites, grasshoppers, crickets, centipedes, and scorpions.

Status

IUCN - Least Concern

Behaviors

In the wild, racquet-tailed rollers occur singly or in pairs unless migrating, at which time they form loose flocks. They are usually observed perched on some vantage point, such as a telegraph pole, dead branch, or termite hill. Females usually lay three eggs at a time and may lay twice a year, depending on the food supply.

Adaptions

Racquet tailed rollers are well adapted for flight.

Special Interests

Rollers get their name from their acrobatic flight, often rolling over and somersaulting in midair.

Folklore

Conservation

Jacksonville Zoo History

This species has been part of the animal collection since November 1996. It has successfully reproduced here.

Exhibit

Plains of East Africa/Rock Hyrax Exhibit