Double-Toothed Barbet

The Double-Toothed Barbet, or Lybius bidenatus, was the first spectacular bird I ticked in Uganda. I recall being struck both by its size and color when spotting it from my backyard shortly after we arrived in Kampala. It is one of Africa's largest barbet species, and despite its common status along the equator in both West and East Africa, it never fails to impress. The field markings are unmistakable at any distance, but the double-toothed bill warrants close inspection. Barbets are not entirely frugivorous, but many have strong ridged bills that are perfect for tearing into thick-skinned fruit. I photographed this individual at Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary near Kibale National Park. It descended from the canopy into a bush to join a frantic group of birds mobbing what was likely a snake. I am still learning the nuances of my new Nikon D500, but with fast and accurate auto focus shooting at ten frames per second, it is difficult to miss a good shot.

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