Found in northern South America around the Amazon Basin, these parrots can live up to 40 years. Somewhat weak fliers, they tend to climb, jump, and hop frequently. They eat seeds, flowers, fruits, and leaves with a few birds often watching for danger as others in the flock forage. Nesting in tree cavities, such as those made by woodpeckers, they lay two to four eggs. They are fairly common in captivity and known for their playful behavior.
It was the familiar dampness that settled on all things
still growing. The nights being longer
now bring a chill to the morning air. There is a smell that changes into the next
season and gone are the delicate aromas of lilacs and tea roses that woke my
senses with the day’s first light.
Word in the trees some flocks are planning on leaving early this year, feasting
on berry bushes and earth worms for the long flight south.
My nest is empty; the chicks have grown and have gone off to survey the world,
perhaps finding their own mates on the long journey ahead. I will certainly
miss my cozy home here. It was pure luck finding this oak with sturdy limbs,
far from the noise of the streets and nestled deep into this quiet cul-de-sac.
Yesterday I noticed those large yellow machines hauling off the little ones, a
given sign I have about three weeks left before joining the others. I guess I
better get busy, I hear there is a new kind of berry bush on Main Street and I’ve
been dying to try them. It’s the squawk of the town!
August 18, 2016 - Channel-billed Toucan (Ramphastos vitellinus)
These large toucans are found from northwestern Colombia across most of north and central South America, including Amazonia and the forest of southeastern Brazil. Their diet is mainly fruit, gathered from the upper levels of the forest, as well as large arthropods and small vertebrates, including bats. They usually travel alone or in pairs, but will often join mixed foraging flocks. Nesting in tree cavities, both parents incubate the eggs and care for the chicks. They are classified by the IUCN as Vulnerable due to hunting and deforestation in the Amazon basin.