“Lilac-Breasted RRRRRRoller”

_DSC0257I took this picture of the the “Lilac-Breasted Roller” on safari last summer in Kenya while we were stopped trying to cross a small creek.

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Safari goers (myself included) are always commenting on the beauty of the the Lilac-Breasted Roller.  On the first safari I led in Africa, our guide Richard was asked “what is that bird called!” and responded with rolling rrrrrrr’s “The Lilac Breasted RRRRRRoller!”  That has always stayed with me.  Richard told us that it is “the national bird of Tanzania.”  Later I learned it is actually the ‘national bird’ of Botswana. National bird or not, nothing can take away from the sheer beauty of the bird.  A washed out green large head, yellowish legs, outer webs of the flight feathers and backside are brilliant violet, pale blueish green outer tail feathers, white chin, lilac breast feathers, blueish green underparts, black bill and brown eyes, and other colors that seem to come out with the light, makes this bird an amazing spectacle.  I can hear Richard,all of these years later,  saying the name…”Lilac-Breasted RRRRRRoller!”

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