Violaceous turaco in exhibit

Violaceous Turaco

Scientific Name

Musophaga violacea

Class

Aves

Order

Cuculiformes

Range

Central Africa, from Senegal to the Central African Republic

Habitat

Tropical forests, savannas, and wetlands

Estimated Wild Population

n/a
Violaceous turaco in exhibit
IUCN Conservation Status: Lower Risk - Least Concern IUCN Conservation Status: Lower Risk - Least Concern

More Information

Physical Description

Violaceous turacos were named for their rich purple feathers. The only turaco species without a crest, these birds have a bright red bill, a yellow forehead, and a magenta crown. They primarily eat fruit, berries, flower buds, and insects.

Interesting Fact 1

Violaceous turacos aren't the best flyers, but they easily navigate their forest habitat by running along branches aided by zygodactyl toes—their toes can move both forward and backward.

Interesting Fact 2

They are also known as "plantain eaters" thanks to their love of the African fruit.

Interesting Fact 3

Their vivid colors come from the bright red pigment turacin, which is prevalent in their diet.

Species Survival Plan logo

Species Survival Plan®

We cooperate with other members of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums to manage the zoo population of this species through a Species Survival Plan®.

Learn More

Animal Care staff working with seal

Commitment to Care

Lincoln Park Zoo prioritizes individual well-being over everything else. Guided by scientific research, staff and volunteers work to provide the best welfare outcomes for each individual in the zoo’s care.

Learn More

Support Your Zoo

Two Chilean flamingos in exhibit

Animals Depend On People Too

When you ADOPT an animal, you support world-class animal care by helping to provide specially formulated diets, new habitat elements, and regular veterinary checkups.

ADOPT an Animal

Asian small-clawed otter in exhibit

Wish List

The Wish List is full of one-of-a-kind items for the zoo’s animals, including nutritious snacks and enrichment items to keep them active and healthy. 

Browse the Wish List

Take Action With Us

Wildlife face many daunting challenges—some global, like planet-wide climate change, and some that affect individuals, like an animal ingesting plastic—but now is not the time to despair. None of these problems are too big for us to come together and solve.

Learn More