Green headed tanager perched, Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil

The green headed tanager (Tangara seledon) is a brightly-colored bird found in the Atlantic forest in south-eastern Brazil, far eastern Paraguay, and far north-eastern Argentina (Misiones only). As other members of the genus Tangara, it is a small colorful bird, measuring an average of 13.5 centimeters (5.3 in) and a mass of 18g (0.6 oz). The Green-headed Tanager has a greenish or bluish head, black on the back, and a contrastingly colored, orange or red rump. Females and juvenile birds have similar, though duller coloration. While essentially a bird of humid forests, it is also common in orchards and parks, where it moves through the canopy, making itself inconspicuous, as its apparently flashy blue-green coloration camouflages it well amongst the foliage. They usually travel in small flocks, either on their own or in association with a larger mixed-species flock. The diet consists both of fruit and arthropods; when foraging for arthropods, they hop along slender to medium-sized branches, and glean prey from branch surfaces and from leaves. The sister species to the Green-headed Tanager is the Seven-colored Tanager (Tangara fastuosa), a similar tanager found in northeastern Brazil. Although the behavior and plumage pattern of the Green-headed and Seven-colored tanagers are […]

Colors of a Maroon breasted parakeet, Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil

The maroon-bellied parakeet (Pyrrhura frontalis) is a small parrot found from southeastern Brazil to north-eastern Argentina, including eastern Paraguay and Uruguay. It is also known as the reddish-bellied parakeet, and in aviculture it is usually referred to as the maroon-bellied conure, reddish-bellied conure or brown-eared conure. These birds range from 25 to 28 cm (10–11 in), and are primarily green, with a maroon patch on the belly, a “scaly” yellow-green-barred breast and sides of neck, a whitish ear-patch often tinged brown, and a maroon undertail. The specific name frontalis is a reference to its dark maroon frontlet – a feature which separates it from most similar species. The primaries are blue on the outer webs, green on the inner webs, and dark on the tips. The beak is black. The maroon-bellied parakeet is common in woodland, and forest edges. In the northern part of its range, it mainly lives in highlands up to 1,400 m (4,600 ft), but elsewhere it is primarily found in lowlands up to 1,000 m (3,300 ft). Tolerates disturbance well and even lives in urban parks (e.g., Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo) and feeds in gardens. Flock size is usually only 6–12 individuals, but up […]

Violaceous Euphonia female perched, Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil

The violaceous euphonia (Euphonia violacea) is a small passerine bird in the true finch family. It is a resident breeder from Trinidad, Tobago and eastern Venezuela south to Paraguay and northeastern Argentina. The bird’s range in northern Brazil is the lower portion of the Amazon Basin and the adjacent Tocantins River drainage, with its northwestern limits from Brazil and the Guyanas, the eastern banks of the Orinoco River drainage in central Venezuela. It occurs in forests, second growth and plantations of cocoa and citrus fruit. The ball nest is built on a bank, tree stump or cavity and the normal clutch is four, sometimes three, red-blotched white eggs, which are incubated by the female. Adult violaceous euphonias are 11.4 cm long and weigh 14 g. The male has glossy blue-black upperparts and a deep golden yellow forehead and underparts. The female and immature are olive green above and greenish yellow below. These are social birds which eat mainly small fruit and only rarely take insects. The violaceous euphonia’s song is a varied mix of musical notes, squeaks, chattering and imitation. Some seasonal wandering has been noted, but no significant movements reported. It is not globally threatened and is concerned least […]

Yellow fronted woodpecker climbing up in search of food, Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil

  The yellow-fronted woodpecker (Melanerpes flavifrons) is a species of bird in the family Picidae. It is found in Brazil, Paraguay, and far northeastern Argentina. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and heavily degraded former forest. This colourful woodpecker is about 18 cm (7 in) long. The sexes are similar apart from the male having a red crown and nape while this region in the female is blueish black. Both have a yellow fore-crown, yellow cheeks, chin and throat, and a broad black band running from the base of the beak, through the eye to the nape. The mantle and upper wings are mainly black, and the back and rump are white. The tail is black with some white barring on the outer feathers. The breast is grey or olive, the belly red and the flanks barred in black and white or black and buff. The iris is blue-black and the distinct orbital ring is yellowish or orange. The beak is black and the legs and feet olive-brown. The juvenile is similar to the adult but less glossy and rather browner, with less red on the belly and crown. The species has a mixed diet consisting […]

Up close with Azure-shouldered tanager, Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil

  The azure-shouldered tanager (Thraupis cyanoptera) is a species of bird in the family Thraupidae. It is found in the Atlantic Forest of eastern Brazil. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forest, subtropical or tropical moist montane forest, and heavily degraded former forest. It is becoming rare due to habitat loss. Many species of Thraupis tanagers are widely-distributed, but the Azure-shouldered Tanager occurs only in the Atlantic forest region of southeastern Brazil, from Espírito Santo south to Rio Grande do Sul. Its distribution overlaps that of the Sayaca Tanager (Thraupis sayaca), but the Azure-shouldered Tanager is larger with a heavier bill, has deep blue wing coverts, and a buffy belly. The Azure-shouldered Tanager forages in humid forest, at forest edge, and in adjacent second growth, but in general it is more closely associated with forest than is the Sayaca Tanager. The diet of the Azure-shouldered Tanager includes both fruit and arthropods. Currently considered Near-threatened as per IUCN redlist. Restricted-range species: present in Atlantic Forest Lowlands EBA. Uncommon to locally fairly common.