Area of zoo
Blackburn Pavilion
Enclosure status
IUCN status
Least Concern
Scientific name
Trachyphonus erythrocephalus
East Africa
Forests and grasslands

Red and yellow barbet facts

  • They dig tunnels into banks and termite mounds.
  • About 40cm in is the nest chamber where four or five eggs are incubated by parents and younger helpers.  
  • Their melodic call sounds like “red and yellow” repeated over and over again.

What do red and yellow barbets look like?

These kaleidoscopic birds have brilliant black and white speckled wing and tail feathers, a bright yellow breast and red cheeks with a white spot on either side. Males have a black crown whereas the female’s is red.

Red and yellow barbet on a branch at London Zoo
Red and yellow barbet in a bush

What do red and yellow barbets eat?

Fruit, seeds, small birds and insects.

Where do red and yellow barbets live?

South-east Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Uganda and North-east Tanzania.

Red and yellow barbet threats

They are sought after for their beautiful feathers and are popular as pets.

Bird at the Zoo

  • Ruppell's griffon vulture close up
    Gyps rueppelli

    Ruppell’s griffon vulture

    This vulture holds the record for the greatest flying height recorded for any bird.

  • A pair of pelicans at London Zoo
    Eastern white pelican

    Eastern white pelican

    Find out everything you need to know about Eastern white pelicans.

  • A greater flamingo with a chick
    Greater flamingos

    Greater flamingo

    Discover exciting facts about greater flamingos.

  • Abdim's stork at London Zoo
    Ciconia abdimii

    Abdim's Stork

    Abdim’s stork are thought to bring rain and good luck, and form huge flocks of up to 10,000 birds.

  • Hyacinth macaw
    Hyacinth macaw

    Hyacinth macaw

  • More facts about our animals