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The western plantain-eater (Crinifer piscatory), also known as the grey plantain-eater or western grey plantain-eater, is a large member of the turaco family, a group of large arboreal near-passerine birds restricted to Africa. Plantain-eaters are part of the Musophagidae family, which consists of turacos, plantain-eaters, and go-away-birds. Plantain-eaters and go-away-birds are the more dull species of the family, while the turacos are the birds blessed with bright, vibrant colours. Musophagidae, literally meaning “banana eaters,” is an appropriate grouping title for the plantain-eaters because plantains are part of the Musa family of fruits, with bananas being their closest relative. Western Grey Plantain eaters are common, noisy and conspicuous birds, despite lacking the brilliant colours of relatives such as the violet turaco. Their plumage is mainly grey above spotted with brown. The head, erectile crest, neck and breast are brown streaked with silver. The underparts are whitish, heavily streaked with brown. Western plantain-eater has a thick bright yellow bill, and shows a white wing bar in flight. The sexes are identical, but immatures have a black woolly head without silver streaking. It is similar to the closely related eastern plantain-eater. The latter species has white tail bars, and lacks the chest bars and dark wing feather shafts of its western relative.
Western grey plantain eaterWestern grey plantain eaterWestern grey plantain eater