written by: Kristina Dems•edited by: Donna Cosmato•updated: 5/28/2010
There are hundreds of species of birds living in the rainforest. They are colorful and beautiful, some of them can even be playful. What kinds of birds are in the rainforest? Get to know some of them better as we examine their habits.
slide 1 of 8
Rainforests are forests with tall trees, and warm climates with lots of rain. There are tropical rainforests in Asia, Africa, Australia, Central America, and South America. The world's largest rainforest is the Amazon rainforest. Amazon is home to the largest collection of plants and animals in the world. More than 50% of Earth's plants and animals live in rainforests, including hundreds of species of majestic birds. The canopies of rainforests provide an ideal habitat for these fine-feathered creatures. What birds are in the rainforest? Let's examine the major species of rainforest birds.
slide 2 of 8
The Ferruginous Pygmy Owl
Ferruginous Pygmy Owls look like the usual forest owls but grow to about 7 inches tall with 14 to 16 inches wingspans. As birds of prey, the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl uses rapid flight and long swoops to feed on insects, scorpions, reptiles, small mammals, and other birds. They are usually found nesting in natural tree cavities, old woodpecker holes, tree depressions, and sometimes termite mounds. Ferruginous Pygmy Owls are located mostly in the Mexican range.
One of the most rare ducks in the planet, the White-Winged Ducks are on the verge of disappearing from the face of the Earth. They usually inhabit shady rainforests in Asia where agricultural fields are threatening their homes. Avoiding sunlight, they usually feed at night. They eat insects, small fish, worms, frogs, and aquatic plants.
slide 4 of 8
The Scarlet Macaw
The Scarlet Macaw is just one of the hundreds of species of parrot living in the humid American tropical rainforest. Its' length is approximately 36 inches, and it is one of the biggest parrots in existence. Its' plumage is extremely colorful, making it very popular in the parrot trade. They do not usually flock together, but there are sightings of flocks in some areas. A group of Scarlet Macaws will only proceed to the clay licks when they have eaten poisonous fruits - the unique type of clay at the licks cleanses the poison.
slide 5 of 8
The Harpy Eagle
Named after the harpies of mythology, which were winged creatures with a vulture's body and a woman's face, the Harpy Eagles are considered the biggest and most powerful eagles in the world. Their hind talons can be compared to grizzly bear claws, definitely making them very formidable birds of prey. They can maneuver through trees to catch their prey like birds, sloths, reptiles, and monkeys. Their hunting styles are definitely something out of myth.
As rainforest birds, Lorikeets frequent Australia, Asia, and Papua New Guniea. Lorikeets fall under the species of parrots. The term, lorikeets, is most often associated with parrots having long and stretched-out tails. The narrow pointed tail provides it with the ability to move quickly and fly fast. Lorikeets have unique brush-like tongue edges which allow them to eat pollen, grains, and nectars. They are colorful and playful birds, which is why they are ideal pets. Among the types of the Lorikeet birds are rainbow lorikeets, blue lorikeets, black-winged lorikeets, and red-collared lorikeets.
slide 7 of 8
The Keel-Billed Toucan
The Keel-Billed Toucan, the national bird of Belize, is found in the lowland areas of the rainforest in Central and South America. Its' scientific name is Ramphastos Sulfuratus. Approximately 2 feet in lenght, it is very attractive because of its bright yellow color, with a thin red outline from face to its chest, and its large hollow beak. Toucans need to exert a lot of effort to fly because of their heavy wings. They primarily feed on small insects, frogs, and fruits. This rainforest bird is one of the threatened species, another victim of progress, as its' homes are being destroyed by urban development and agricultural fields.
What birds are in the rainforest? Colorful, playful and wonderful ones.