From 10,758 to 10,912 Living Species

Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) by Robert Scanlon. Now there’s a Burmese Collard Dove (Streptopelia xanthocycla) split off from it.

Wow! Since I last updated the World Bird List here on this site, 154 new Species have been added, 4 Orders have been added, 2 Families have been added, and 52 Genera have been added in the last two years.

This is what was last count in 2019:

Version 9.2 (June 22, 2019)

The IOC World Bird List 9.2 contains 10,758 extant species (and 158 extinct species) classified in 40 Orders,  250 Families and 2,320 Genera.  The list also includes 20,034 subspecies, their ranges and  authors.

Mountain Imperial-Pigeon (Ducula badia) by Ian

Mountain Imperial-Pigeon (Ducula badia) by Ian. Now there’s a Malabar Imperial Pigeon Ducula cuprea is split from Mountain Imperial Pigeon Ducula badia.

This is the new count:

Version 11.2 (July 15, 2021)

The IOC World Bird List 11.2 contains 10,912 extant species (and 160 extinct species) classified in 44 Orders, 252 Families and 2,372 Genera.  The list also includes 19,889 subspecies, their ranges and authors.

Over the next few days, (or weeks) I hope to update our pages to the current list. Because of Covid concerns (no birding), and some health issues, I have neglected to update these. I am curious as to what they have added and deleted in the last few years. Stay tuned!

“For I am the LORD, I change not;” (Malachi 3:6 KJV)

Thankfully, Our Lord does not change!!

I did list some of the changes to the 10.1 version, but didn’t update the site. See:

World Bird Names Changes Version 10.1

I just discovered these Name Changes to 10.1 as I was finishing this article up. I just may do the same for 10.2 and 11.1 versions so you can see the changes in smaller batches. Stay tuned some more!

So, expect the links to the list to be changing as this process is on going:

World Bird List

Species

Orders

Families

 

Reviewing Avian and Attributes

American Avocet (Recurvirostra americana) by Jim Fenton

American Avocet (Recurvirostra americana) by Jim Fenton

August 14, 2017 the Avian and Attributes series was started. The first of the series was Avian and Attributes – Almighty.

I stated that, “A good friend of mine, Rhonda Sawtelle, (Create a Positive Day), has been posting every day on her Facebook a different attribute of our Lord God. She has been going through them alphabetically. What if each day, we had a different attribute and a bird that starts with that same letter. My challenge is to try to at least get through the alphabet at least once. Maybe several rounds. Stay tuned!” [By the way, she still has her blog.] I did manage to come up with at least an attribute and a bird for each letter of the alphabet, though I pushed it a few times, like with “X”.

If you would like to review them, or see them for the first time, see below. You can also find this list in the left menu as Avian and Attributes.

Avian and Attributes Articles:

A:

Admirable – Admirable Hummingbird

Almighty – American Avocet

Always There (Omnipresent) – American Bittern

Ancient (of Days) – Ancient Murrelet

Apostle’s Teacher – Apostlebird

B:

Beautiful – Beautiful Firetail

Bishop – Bishop Oo

Blood – Blood Partridge

Bountiful/Bountifully – Bounty Shag

Bush (Hosted God) – Bush Blackcap

Busy – Buzzing Flowerpiercer

C:

Captain – Celestial Monarch

Cheer – Cheer Pheasant

Clay (Potter) – Clay-colored Sparrow and Thrush

Cloud – Cloud Cisticola , Cloud-forest Pygmy Owl and C-F Screech Owl

Cook – Cook Reed Warbler, Cook’s Swift and Petrel

Creator – Major Mitchell’s Cockatoo

Creator – Creator of the Garden

Crowned I – First Four “Crowned” Birds – 1

Crowned II – Last Four “Crowned” Birds – 2

D:

David’s – David’s Fulvetta

Deliverer – Dove

Diadem – Diademed Tanager

Diademed – Diademed Amazon, Sandpiper-Plover, and Tapaculo

Diamond – Diamond Dove and Diamond Firetail 

E:

Ear(ed) – Eared Birds

Elegant – 13 Elegant Birds

Emerald – Emerald Birds

Ensign – Emperor Bird-of-Paradise

Everlasting – Bald Eagle

F:

Faithful – Peregrine Falcon

Fearful – Fearful Owl

Fire – Fire Birds

Flame – Flame Birds

Fortress – Flame Robin

Friend/Friendly – Friendly Bush Warbler and Friendly Fantail

G:

Garden [Creator of The Garden] – Garden Emerald and Garden Warbler

Glistening – Glistening-green Tanager

Glittering – Glittering Birds

Glowing – Glowing Puffleg

Gracious – Graceful Honeyeater

Glorious – Ruffed Grouse

H:

Helper – Hamerkop

Hill – Hill Birds

Holy – Lewin’s Honeyeater

Horn(ed) – Horn Birds

House – House Birds

I:

Immutable – Marshall’s Iora

Imperial – Imperial Birds

Invisible – Invisible Rail

J:

Judge – Joyful Greenbul

Justifier – Rufous-tailed Jacamar

K:

Kind – Kaempfer’s Woodpecker

King – Grey Kingbird

L:

Light – Light-mantled Albatross

Lord – Lord Derby and Lord Howe Birds

Love – Fischer’s Lovebird

M:

Majestic – Magnificent Frigatebird

Mercy – Chestnut-breasted Malkoha

Magnificent – Magnificent Birds

Mocking – Mocking Cliff Chat

Morning – Morningbird

Mount – Mount Birds

Mountain – Mountain Birds

Mute – Mute Swan

Myrtle – Myrtle Warbler

N:

Naked – Naked-faced Barbet and Spiderhunter

Name Above All Names – Common Nightingale

Nazarene – Nazca Booby

Night – Night Parrot

Noble – Noble Snipe

O:

Omnipotent – Great Horned Owl

Omnipresence – Orange-bellied Leafbird

P:

Palm – Palm Birds

Paradise – Paradise Birds

Peace – Peaceful Dove

Pearl – Pearl Kite

Pilot – Pilotbird

Providence – Parrot-billed Sparrow

Purple -Purple Birds

Q:

Quickens – Resplendent Quetzal

Quiets Our Fears – Queen Carola’s Parotia

R:

Rainbow –  Rainbow Birds

Redeemer – Brazilian Ruby

Reed – Reed Cormorant and Parrotbill

Reunion – Reunion Birds

Ring – Ring Ouzel

River – River Birds

Rock – Rock Dove

Royal – Royal Birds

Ruby/Rubies – “Ruby-” Birds

S:

Sacred – Sacred Kingfisher

Sad – Sad Flycatcher

Sand – Sand Birds

Sapphire – Sapphire Birds

Scale – Scale- Birds

Scarlet – Scarlet Birds

Scarlet – Scarlet-plus Birds

Screaming – Cowbird and Piha

Seaside – Seaside Sparrow

Shade – Shade Bush Warbler

Sharp – Part I

Sharp – Part II

Shepherd – Mute Swan

Song – Song Sparrow

Star – Star Birds

Step – Steppe Eagle

Stephen – Stephen’s Lorikeet

Stitch – Stitchbird

Stone – Stone Partridge

Stripes – Striped-backed Birds

Strong – Strong-billed Birds

Sun – Sun Birds

Superb – Superb Birds

Sword – Sword-billed Hummingbird

T:

Tears – Teardrop White Eye

Three (in One) – Three-banded Courser

Torrent – Torrent Birds

Truth – White-winged Triller

U:

Undefiled – Umbrellabird

Unreproveable – Unspotted Saw-whet Owl

V:

Variableness (No) – Variable Sunbird

Vine – Vireos

W:

Way – White-eyes

Willing – Willet

X:

X-Excellence – Xingu Scale-backed Antbird

X-Exalted – Xenops

Y:

Yahweh – Yellowthroat

Yoke – Yellow-crowned Bishop

Z:

Zeal – Zenaida Dove

Zoologist – Zone-Tailed Hawk

Paintbrush Birds – Painted Bunting

Painted Bunting Subspecies (Passerina ciris ciris) ©WikiC

Every since my first encounter with a Painted Bunting, they have been one of top favorites. [notice I have lots of favorites :)] When we lived in south Florida, I turned to look out my window and saw one of the Avian Wonders on my feeder hanging under the awning. Wow!!! I am sure my eyes were about ready to pop out!! What a beauty! This definitely qualifies for a Paintbrush Bird. In fact, it looks like the Creator had several bushes with a dab of color on each and painted these gorgeous birds.

Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris) ©Flickr Ralph Arvesen

The male painted bunting is often described as the most beautiful bird in North America and as such has been nicknamed nonpareil, or “without equal”. Its colors, dark blue head, green back, red rump, and underparts, make it extremely easy to identify, but it can still be difficult to spot since it often skulks in foliage even when it is singing. The plumage of female and juvenile painted buntings is green and yellow-green, serving as camouflage. Once seen, the adult female is still distinctive, since it is a brighter, truer green than other similar songbirds.

Painted Bunting – Female ©WikiC Dan_Pancamo

The juveniles have two inserted molts in their first autumn, each yielding plumage like an adult female. 

The painted bunting occupies typical habitat for a member of its family. It is found in thickets, woodland edges with riparian thickets, shrubbery and brushy areas. In the east, the species breeds in maritime hammocks and scrub communities. Today, it is often found along roadsides and in suburban areas, and in gardens with dense, shrubby vegetation. The wintering habitat is typically the shrubby edges along the border of tropical forests or densely vegetated savanna. The breeding range is divided into two geographically separate areas. These include southern Arizona, southern New Mexico, southern and eastern Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, northern Florida, coastal Georgia, the southern coast and inland waterways such as the Santee River of South Carolina and northern Mexico. They winter in South Florida, Cuba, the Bahamas, along both coasts of Mexico and through much of Central America. Occasionally, they may be vagrants further north, including to New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. The bird is also found every few years as far north as New Brunswick, Canada. (Wikipedia, with editing)

Great Verses:

“Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age. Also he made him a tunic of many colors.” (Genesis 37:3 NKJV)

“The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” (Genesis 9:16 NKJV) [Maybe the Lord gave us a “small reminder” of His rainbow for bright sunny days when our Painted Bunting is flitting about.]

See More Paintbrush Birds:

Other post about the Painted Bunting:

Birdwatching and Blessings – 6/22/21

Birdwatching and Blessings – Sandhill Cranes

Today’s main visitors were three Sandhill Cranes. They were also here yesterday:

Sandhill Cranes feeding 6/21 by Lee

Sandhill Cranes feeding yesterday 6/21 by Lee

Today, because of the rain we had last night, and the fact that the food plates had been visited yesterday, they were empty of food, but full of water. So, I stepped out and put the hanging feeder on the ground. It didn’t take time for the Sandy’s to find it.

Sandhill Cranes feeding 6/22 by Lee

Sandhill Cranes feeding 6/22 by Lee

Earlier there had been two Fish Crows here, but before I could get the camera, they took off.

Sandhill Crane upclose 6/22 by Lee

Sandhill Crane up close 6/22 by Lee

Look at that pose! It was nice of him/her to give me a great chance to zoom in. This was the guard Crane. There is usually one on duty.

Church Signs:

Looking for a lifeguard? Ours walks on water.

A father is someone you can look to no matter how tall you get.

Sorrow looks back, worry looks around, faith looks up.

Failure and success are on the same road. Success is just further down that road.

Truths To Consider:

“Can you search out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limits of the Almighty?” (Job 11:7 NKJV)

Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalms 139:23-24 KJV)

“Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.” (Psalms 141:3 KJV)

Previous:

Wordless Birds – With Hummingbirds

Paintbrush Birds – Mandarin Duck

Mandarin Duck (Aix galericulata) by

Mandarin Duck (Aix galericulata) by Dan

Description and Details

The Mandarin Duck is definitely one of Our Creator’s Masterpieces, far as I’m concerned. I love my local Wood Ducks, but this duck is absolutely one of my favorites! My first glimpse of the Mandarin Ducks was at the Miami Zoo, now Zoo Miami, years ago. They have such clean lines and details that were and are just breathtaking! Later we viewed them many times at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, now Zoo Tampa.

Mandarin Duck (Aix galericulata) Zoo Miami by Lee

Mandarin Duck (Aix galericulata) Zoo Miami by Lee

“In the wild, mandarin ducks breed in densely wooded areas near shallow lakes, marshes or ponds. They nest in cavities in trees close to water and during the spring, the females lay their eggs in the tree’s cavity after mating. A single clutch of nine to twelve eggs is laid in April or May. Although the male may defend the brooding female and his eggs during incubation, he himself does not incubate the eggs and leaves before they hatch. Shortly after the ducklings hatch, their mother flies to the ground and coaxes the ducklings to leap from the nest. After all of the ducklings are out of the tree, they will follow their mother to a nearby body of water.

Mandarins feed by dabbling or walking on land. They mainly eat plants and seeds, especially beech mast. The species will also add snails, insects and small fish to its diet. The diet of mandarin ducks changes seasonally; in the fall and winter, they mostly eat acorns and grains. In the spring, they mostly eat insects, snails, fish and aquatic plants. In the summer, they eat dew worms, small fish, frogs, mollusks, and small snakes. They feed mainly near dawn or dusk, perching in trees or on the ground during the day.” (Wikipedia with editing)
 

The Mandarin Duck has been featured before, and some of those articles are linked below. I rediscovered this video that I took at the Zoo:

Great Verses:

“And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.” (Genesis 2:2-3 KJV)

“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable.” (Isaiah 40:28 NKJV)

 

Previous Posts about the Mandarin Duck:

Gideon

Birdwatching and Blessings – 6/17/21

Red-winged Blackbird at S. Lake Howard Nature Pk. by Lee

Red-winged Blackbird at S. Lake Howard Nature Pk. by Lee

Birdwatching and Blessings – 6/17/21

Quiet is the word for our yard lately. Other than the Red-winged Blackbird and Mockingbird arguing over who would get to sit on the feeder pole, it has been rather boring.

This morning, only one of the Whistling Ducks showed up to feed. Maybe, the other one is sitting on a nest. That would be exciting. There are no Duck boxes around the neighborhood, so they would have to go to another location for nesting. I can only wish! It would be great to see some immature Whistling Duck swimming behind their parents.

Northern Mockingbird on Hook by Lee

Church Signs:

Life is good because God is great!

To have more, desire less.

The teakettle sings even when its up to its neck in hot water.

Truths To Consider:

“Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.” (Proverbs 13:10 KJV)

“Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” (Philippians 4:11 KJV)

Previous:

Pastor Jerry Smith – Testimony

Paintbrush Birds – European Bee-eater

European Bee-eater @Francesco Pellegrini

European Bee-eater @Francesco Pellegrini

Description and Details

“The European bee-eater (Merops apiaster) is a near passerine bird in the bee-eater family, Meropidae. It breeds in southern Europe and in parts of north Africa and western Asia. It is strongly migratory, wintering in tropical Africa. This species occurs as a spring overshoot north of its range, with occasional breeding in northwest Europe.”

“This species, like other bee-eaters, is a richly coloured, slender bird. It has brown and yellow upper parts, whilst the wings are green and the beak is black. It can reach a length of 27–29 cm (10.6–11.4 in), including the two elongated central tail feathers. Sexes are alike. Female tends to have greener rather than gold feathers on shoulders. Non-breeding plumage is much duller and with a blue-green back and no elongated central tail feathers.

European Bee-Eater – (Merops apiaster)

Great Verses:

“TO LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great beasts.” (Psalms 104:24-25 KJV)

“He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11 KJV)

More European Bee-eaters:

European Bee-eater (Merops apiaster) by Ian

More Paintbrush Birds:

Paintbrush Birds – Gouldian Finch

Gouldian Finch - Male adult @Wikipedia

Gouldian Finch – Male adult @Wikipedia

Paintbrush Birds – Gouldian Finch

The Gouldian finch (Chloebia gouldiae), also known as the Lady Gouldian finch, Gould’s finch or the rainbow finch, is a colorful passerine bird that is native to Australia. Both sexes are brightly colored with black, green, yellow, and red markings. The females tend to be less brightly colored. One major difference between the sexes is that the male’s chest is purple, while the female’s is a lighter mauve.

Gouldian finches’ heads may be red, black, or yellow. Formerly considered three different kinds of finches, it is now known that these are color variants that exist in the wild. Selective breeding has also developed mutations (blue, yellow and silver instead of a green back) in both body and breast color.

Black-headed male Gouldian @Finch Frankfurt Zoo

Black-headed male Gouldian Finch @Frankfurt Zoo

Prior to the Australian government’s ban on the export of Australian fauna, Gouldian finches were exported worldwide. These birds have resulted in viable breeding populations being held in many countries.

Captive breeding has resulted in several colour mutations. Mutations vary by country, with some existing only in Australia (the Australian yellow and the Australian “dilute”) and others existing in greater number in the United States, such as the blue bodied Gouldian. The most common body mutations in the United States are blue, pastel green (single and double-factor, resulting in “dilute” and yellow males and yellow females), and pastel blue (again, single and double-factor producing “pastel” and silver males, and silver hens).

(Wikipedia with editing)

FUN FACTS – San Diego Zoo

  • Only the male Gouldian finch sings.
  • The Gouldian finch is also known as the Lady Gould’s finch, named for the wife of John Gould, a famous 19th century British ornithologist and artist.
  • Gouldian finches prefer temperatures constantly above 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius).

What a beautiful colorful array of the rainbow.

Great Verses:

“Many, O LORD my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.” (Psalms 40:5 NKJV)

“We will not hide them from their children, Telling to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.” (Psalms 78:4 NKJV)

What will you do with Jesus?

Paintbrush Birds – Lilac-breasted Roller

Lilac-breasted-Roller@wikipediacommons

The Lilac-breasted Roller is another beautiful candidate as a Paintbrush Bird. Our Master Creator has provided us with another neatly painted bird.

Description and Details

“The lilac-breasted roller (Coracias caudatus) is an African bird of the roller family, Coraciidae. It prefers open woodland and savanna, and it is for the most part absent from treeless places. Usually found alone or in pairs, it perches conspicuously at the tops of trees, poles or other high vantage points from where it can spot insects, lizards, scorpions, snails, small birds and rodents moving about on the ground.[2] Nesting takes place in a natural hole in a tree where a clutch of 2–4 eggs are laid, and incubated by both parents, who are extremely aggressive in defense of their nest, taking on raptors and other birds.

“The diet of the lilac-breasted roller consists of arthropods and small vertebrates, including ground-dwelling insects, spiders, scorpions, centipedes and millipedes, snails, and a variety of small vertebrates, including small birds. Slow-moving lizards, chameleons and snakes, and the blind, burrowing Afrotyphlops and Leptotyphlops species are especially vulnerable to them when crossing roads. In East Africa, they join other perch hunters like Taita fiscals and pale flycatchers to make opportunistic use of grassland fires, and in South Africa are likewise seen in association with kites, storks, swallows and bee-eaters when burning of firebreaks drive small animals unto roads.

Because they feed mainly on terrestrial prey, lilac-breasted rollers will perch to scout from a higher vantage point (including from atop of large herbivorous mammals) before swooping in and grabbing prey with their beaks. If their prey is small, they will swallow it on the ground. These aggressive birds will carry larger prey back to a perch and beat it until it is dismembered. (Wikipedia)

Lilac-breasted Roller @Answersafrica

Lilac-breasted Roller @Answersafrica

Great Verses:

While looking for a verse with “Roll or Roller” in it, I came across this great truth from our Lord:

“Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.” (Proverbs 16:3 KJV) [or as the Amplified version states this verse]

Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed.” (Proverbs 16:3 AMP)

Lilac-breasted Roller (Coracias caudatus) by Africaddict

More Paintbrush Birds:

Who Paints The Leaves?

Paintbrush Birds – Wood Ducks

My most favorite duck is the Wood Duck. To me, it seems as if someone took a paintbrush and created such a beautiful Avian Wonder. Of course, that Creator was the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the Great Creator. So, the Wood Duck is our first Paintbrush Bird to start off another new Series. Paintbrush Birds

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:1-3 KJV)

This picture that Dan took at Lake Hollingsworth, in Lakeland, Florida, is real. I was right there beside Dan when we took photos. Of course, his turned out the best, and it is not a painting.

Mr and Mrs Wood Duck by Lee

Mr and Mrs Wood Duck by Lee at Lake Hollingsworth

When we watch the birds, I have to just pause in awe at colors and designs of the birds. Everywhere we look, if our eyes are truly open, we can see that these Avian Wonders just didn’t evolve.

“So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” (Genesis 1:21-22 NKJV)

The animals, birds, fish, and even humans are under the curse now, but what might the originally created have looked like? Wow! I WOW! now when I see the beauty that is around us even now. I also see the scars from the fall around also.

Back to this series I’m starting. The desire is to showcase some of these birds that look like they were “hand-painted.” Also, after finding similar post, more information will be given about the bird itself. Trust you enjoy these efforts.

Wood Ducks belong to the Anatidae Family Here is a previous video from the Petersen Birding videos here. It is definitely worth watching. It provides quite a lot of information about this beautifully created Wood Duck.

Here are a few close ups of the Wood Duck. You decide about the “Painter!”

I just realized while viewing Ray’s Wood Duck that I have the five colors I need to make another Wordless Bird. Red, Yellow, Black, White and Green.

Previous Articles about the Wood Duck:

Our Ducky Backyard

“D” is for Ducks, Dabblers and Divers: “D” Birds, Part 1 by JJSJ

While looking for more Wood Duck articles, I found these interesting post along the same ideas as this “new” series, that may not be so “new” :)

 

Some Shared Videos From Dr. Johnson

JJSJ, as those of you regular readers know, is Dr. James J.S. Johnson, who has written many posts here. He sent me several links to very interesting tales of birds on video. I forget to post them, so, here are two of the latest videos:

White-fronted Bee-eater (Merops bullockoides) by Africaddict

The White Fronted Bee Eaters video was produced by the San Diego Zoo. They have one of the most complex Social Structures. Enjoy!

“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32 NKJV)

“And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32 AMP)

This latest one is about a Woman who gives toys to Magpies. She is from Australia.

I found these both rather interesting.  Here in Florida, we are not blessed with neither of these kinds of birds. Trust you enjoy learning about these two Avian Wonders.

Check out the many post from “Dr. Jim”, as I like to call him:

James J. S. Johnson’s Posts

Wordless Birds

Ian’s Irregular Bird – Toco Toucan

Please forgive the shock of another Irregular Bird: I’m currently full of good intentions, which I’ll talk about later. I have Toucans on my mind at the moment, which I’ll also mention later, so here is the Toco Toucan which was well up on our list of wanted birds on our visit to the Pantanal in Brazil in September 2019.

Toco Toucan (Ramphastos toco) by Ian

We found our first one, above, on our first day driving into the Pantanal, feeding on a lone fruiting tree beside the road. This gave us the impression that this large species would be easy to find, but we saw very few after that and I photographed only this one other bird, below, feeding on another fruiting tree beside the river on the way from Porto Jofre to the Meeting of the Waters National Park (Encontro das Águas) to look for Jaguars. This species of Toucan is readily identified by its diagnostic yellow and orange, black-tipped bill and in the second photo, you can just see the red undertail coverts and white rump, both also characteristic of this species.
With a length of 60cm/24in and weight to 800gm/1.8lbs this is the largest of the seven or eight species of large Toucan (genus Ramphastos). It is also the only one that doesn’t inhabit forests; it occurs on forest edges and in grasslands. It has a wide range in South America from Guyana south to northern Argentina, avoiding the forested regions of the Amazon Basin. It nests in cavities in trees, river banks or termite nests. Both adults incubate and feed the young, predominantly on insects when very young but gradually switching to the adult diet of fruit such as figs as the nestlings grow older.

Guinness Toucan Poster from Ian

Guinness Toucan Poster from Ian

Toucans are strange and spectacular birds and it is not surprising that they have captured the popular imagination. I remember this poster for Guinness in the bar of Greystones Golf Club, Co. Wicklow, when I was a kid in Ireland in the 1950s. Guinness has used the Toucan as a mascot since the 1930s. Who knows, maybe Guinness helped spark my interest in birds, though there was another one about Gnus – “The New Gnu at the Zoo; Guinness is Good for You” – which aroused only a mild interest in even-toed, horned ungulates. The toucan artist has taken a bit of license with a slightly hybrid design (the black spot on the bill is missing, the patch around the eye is blue and green and the yellow and red breast bands are normally barely visible on the Toco Toucan) but it is certainly a Toco Toucan and not one of the other species (http://www.birdway.com.au/ramphastidae/).
The reason why I have Toucans on my mind is because I usually wear tropical shirts when I go folk dancing with the Townsville dancers, suitable for dancing in the tropics even if most of the dance originate in eastern Europe and the Middle East. One of the dancers gave me a pair of socks featuring flamingos to go with a flamingo shirt that I have, so I went on a search for suitable socks to go with another shirt with Toucans and Macaws. As you can see toucan on both the socks and the shirt is a Toco Toucan and I couldn’t resist sharing them and photos of the real thing with you.
One of the reasons the Irregular Bird has been very rare recently is that I started doing a series on island birding so we could get vicarious pleasure from pretending to travel when we were prevented from doing so by Covid-19. I got bogged down on a trip to Macquarie Island, preparing lots of photos and researching lots of species and never finished it. So, I’ve decided to go back to the original format of dealing with a single species at a time, and hopefully that will be easier to do and more frequent. I haven’t taken many photos since the pandemic started, but there are plenty of species left in the library to keep us going until and if things get back to normal.
Greetings
Ian


Ian Montgomery,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Phone: 0411 602 737 +61-411 602 737
Preferred Email: ian@birdway.com.au

Recorder Society http://www.nqrs.org.au

Lee Addition:

Toucans are part of the Ramphastidae Family.

Love those Toucans. In fact, the Green-billed Toucan is one of the Wordless Bird posts.

Wordless Toucan