In North America there are currently 21.17.19 (57) green woodhoopoes of varying sub-species currently housed at 18 institutions.  Of those, there are  56 captive hatches and 1 wild-caught specimen. 

Their numbers have increased sharply in the last few years.  However, most of the living individuals are derived from a small number of founders making the current population very closely related.


Green woodhoopoes are primarily carnivorous and insectivorous. A variety of insects should be provided such as waxworms, adult crickets and/or mealworms of various sizes.  Their diet should also include small pieces of bird-of-prey meat (i.e. Nebraska brand), chopped greens and fruit, and soaked dog food and/or soft-bill pellets. A sprinkle of vitamin supplement such as vionate, calcium (especially important during nesting season), or Nekton I should also be provided. 


Green Woodhoopoes have successfully bred in both free-flight aviaries and smaller well-planted enclosures (smallest averaging 4’ x 10’ x 10’) when isolated into pairs.  When provided a variety of nest boxes and palm logs in larger aviaries, they will generally inspect each one to their liking.  Both should average about 12-18’’deep with a 2-3’’ diameter hole and can be 10-12’’ square.  There are obviously exceptions with some pairs choosing boxes that weren’t meant for them.  The birds nest in unlined cavities but they will usually excavate shaving if placed in the box. 

Breeding pairs can frequently have multiple clutches per season.  The adult pair and the eldest clutch of fledged chicks can generally be maintained together, but it is advisable to remove these older chicks when the subsequent clutch is ready to fledge.  The breeding pair can be aggressive to and sometimes kill the older chicks.  Same-sex pairings of adult green woodhoopoes have been successful in both large and small aviaries. 


Roughly 8-10% of the historical captive population have escaped from zoological institutions, showing a need for care in choosing enclosures.  Green woodhoopoes explore their environment throughly due to their natural nature of being foragers as well as having a healthy supply of curiosity.  They often inspect every inch of their enclosure from top to bottom and find weaknesses that exist.  Their body design allows them to slip into tight spaces that either allows them escape, or equally as likely, entrapment.  Birds that are not seen for several days are sometimes found dead, wedged into spaces that they were unable to escape from.  They have also been known to chip away at old, rotten wood thus making their own escape route.   Always inspect aviaries, intro cages, and any other spaces they are housed in for even the smallest openings.



ABILENE                                                    CAPE MAY

Abilene Zoological Gardens                           Cape May County Park Zoo

P.O. Box 60                                                 4 Moore Road

Abilene, TX 79604-0060                                  Cape May, NJ   08210-3071

CHICAGOBR                                           CLEVELAND

Chicago Zoological Park                                Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

3300 Golf Rd                                            3900 Wildlife Way

Brookfield, IL  60513                                  Cleveland, OH  44109

COLUMBUS                                              DALLAS

Columbus Zoological Gardens                           Dallas Zoo

P.O. Box 400                                           650 South R.L. Thornton Fwy  

Powell, OH  43065-0400                               Dallas, TX            75203-3013

FRANKLINP                                              HONOLULU

Zoo New England                                              Honolulu Zoo

1 Franklin Park Rd.                                   151 Kapahulu Ave.

Boston, MA  02121                              Honolulu, HI  96815-7173

HOUSTON                                                 NY BRONX

Houston Zoological Gardens                           The Wildlife Conservation Soc.

1513 N. MacGregor                               2300 Southern Blvd  

Houston, TX  77030                                Bronx, NY  10460-1099

ORLANDO                                                 PITTS CA

SeaWorld Adventure Parks Orlando                 National Aviary in Pittsburgh

7007 Sea World Drive                              Allegheny Commons West

Orlando, FL  32821-8097                               Pittsburgh, PA  15212

SANDIEGOZ                                              SD-WAP

San Diego Zoological Garden                            San Diego Wild Animal Park

P.O. Box 120551                                               15500 San Pasqual Valley Rd

San Diego, CA  92112-0551                      Escondido, CA  92027

SEA WORLD                                            SIOUX FAL

SeaWorld Adventure Parks California               Great Plains Zoo

500 Sea World Drive                              805 S. Kiwanis

San Diego, CA  92109-7904                      Sioux Falls, SD  57104-3714

TOLEDO                                                    WINNIPEG

Toledo Zoological Gardens                           Assiniboine Park Zoo

P.O. Box 4010                                         2355 Corydon Ave.

Toledo, OH  43609                              Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada  R3P 0R5