Ruwenzori Turacos

The Ruwenzori Turaco (Ruwenzorornis johnstoni) is a species of bird in the Musophagidae family that is endemic to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire), Uganda, Rwanda and Burund.

Within its distribution, the Ruwenzori inhabits woodlands from 2000 to 3600m. It was previously considered parapatric with the Ross’s Turaco.

These turacos occur in pairs or small family groups, with many individuals remaining paired and aggressively defending territories throughout the year.

Particularly favors the bamboo zones and areas dominated with epiphytes and lianas.


This turaco averages 17–18 in (43-46 cm) beak to tail, and weighs around 8.2–8.7 oz (232–247 g).

;The plumage is brilliant green and violet blue with red primaries (= longest wing feathers) that are conspicuous in flight. They also have a short glossy green or purplish blue crest on hindcrown; nape dull crimson, chin and their throat is blue black.

There is a distinctive peachy-red patch on an otherwise green breast. The wings and tail are deep violet blue.

The shape of the bill is highly distinctive with a rounded culmen rising to a narrow bony ridge between the eyes.

The eyelids are scarlet surrounded by highly variable loral areas (= areas between beak and eyes); these being emerald green and fully feathered in kivuensis, but simply bare yellowish skin with some pinkish red below and behind the eyes in the nominate birds.

Diet / Food:

It feeds generally on fruits and berries, but also consumes other plant material, such as leaves and flowers, as well as some arthropods.

Nesting / Breeding:

One or two dull grayish-white eggs are laid in a nest that is little more than a small platform of sticks, generally 10-15 ft (3-5 m) above ground in a bamboo thicket.

Touraco / Turaco InformationTuraco SpeciesTuracos as PetsBreeding the Turaco

Photo of author

Team Beauty of Birds's team of experts includes veterinarians, biologists, environmentalists and active bird watchers. All put together, we have over half a century of experience in the birding space.

You can meet our team here.