Musophagids are medium-sized arboreal birds endemic to sub-Saharan Africa, where they live in forests, woodland and savanna. Their flight is weak, but they run quickly through the tree canopy. They feed mostly on fruits.

Musophagids are gregarious and do not migrate. Many species are noisy, with the go-away-birds being especially noted for their piercing alarm calls, which alert other fauna to the presence of predators or hunters. Musophagids build large stick nests in trees, and lay 2 or 3 eggs. 

The Go-away-birds are mainly grey and white. The touracos on the other hand are brightly coloured birds, usually blue, green or purple. The green color in turacos comes from turacoverdin, the only true green pigment in birds known to date. Other "greens" in bird colors result from a yellow pigment such as some carotenoid, combined with the prismatic physical structure of the feather itself which scatters the light in a particular way and giving a blue color. Turaco wings contain the red pigment turacin, unlike in other birds where red color is due to carotenoids. Both pigments are derived from porphyrins and only known from the Musophagiformes at present.

Hackett SJ et al (2008): Phylogenomic Study of Birds