In the decades since Webster first noted the joy of the Hoopoe's crest, the genealogy of birds would seem to have changed. Of course, lumping and splitting is a favourite pastime of some birders but in this era the genera Upupa has just one species - Epops.

Almost as pleasurable as the Hoopoe's crest is its colour scheme. The bird has a pinky-brown body with black and white striped wings. The crest is of black feathers with white tips. Overall, the bird is of a similar size to a city (feral) pigeon but has a much longer, down curved bill.

The Hoopoe can be found in the northern sub-tropical band of the Old World - i.e. both sides of the Mediterranean and across the Middle East and the Indian sub-contintent.

Hoop"oe (?), Hoop"oo (?), n. [So called from its cry; cf. L. upupa, Gr. , D. hop, F. huppe; cf. also G. wiedenhopf, OHG. wituhopfo, lit., wood hopper.] Zool.

A European bird of the genus Upupa (U. epops), having a beautiful crest, which it can erect or depress at pleasure. Called also hoop, whoop. The name is also applied to several other species of the same genus and allied genera.

<-- Hoops. n. The game of basketball [Slang]. Hoopster. n. Basketball player. [Slang] -->

 

© Webster 1913.

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