The southern ground hornbill is the largest of all the hornbills, reaching a height of one metre. It has clear sexual dimorphism; the male is larger with continuous red colouring on the face and neck, while the female is smaller, with a blue throat.
It lives in groups of 5 to 10 individuals, made up by the couple and 5 to 8 ‘helpers’, including adults and young specimens. The southern ground hornbill rests on trees and rocks and descends to the ground a little before sunrise, foraging during most of the day.
It feeds as a group; when one bird locates a prey, it makes a sound similar to a bark, calling the other members of the group to help. It nests in tree hollows or on rocks.