There are some 18 species in six genera of Turacos (order Musophagiformes), also spelled touraco, lourie or plantain-eater – colourful, fruit-eating African birds. They are well adapted to canopy life with long tails for balance and a special fourth toe that rotates to help them cling to branches. Unlike other birds, the green colour of turacos is a ‘true’ green pigment called turacoverdin (thought unique in their family Musophagidae). The green colour of other birds comes from a yellow pigment combined with a blue colour created when light shines through a particular feather structure (like a glass prism separating colours in white light). Turacos also have a red colour pigment on the underside of their wings called turacin, also thought unique to the family. These red feathers are visible when turacos fly off and may be used to warn social groups of approaching predators.
See also: Bare faced go away bird, Fischer's Tursaco, Great Blue turaco, Guinea Green Turaco, Lady Ross Turaco/Ross's Turaco, Red crested turaco, Schalow's Turaco, Violet Turaco, White cheeked Turaco