Abyssinian Roller

The Abyssinian Roller, or Coracias abyssinica, is the gaudiest member of this family of large, colorful birds. Rollers are named after their aerial maneuvers, in which they tumble spectacularly through the air flashing their brilliant plumage in courtship or territorial displays. Inhabiting woodland and savanna, often near human settlements, rollers are difficult to miss whether on safari or simply driving around. I regularly spot Broad-Billed Rollers along the road on my travels in Uganda, and the Lilac-Breasted Roller is one of most commonly seen birds on safari in East Africa. The Abyssinian Roller inhabits semi-arid savanna, bush, and woodland, including the Sahel further north. In January, Aimee and I found several pairs of Abyssinian Roller in Murchison Falls National Park along the road towards Wankwar Gate.






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