Monkey Forest Tales: Some observations about birds in the study area

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I have been thinking for a while to write about some of my not specialized observations of birds in the area. In today’s post, I will share some of the patterns observed over the years for this most colorful animals. I have to admit that I’m an amateur in terms of birds, I know the basic from my studies in biology, but it wasn’t until I live in a place where most mammals where nocturnal that I developed an interest and enjoy observing birds during my daily walks, despite the good efforts of some of my ornithologist friends in previous years.

Probably the biggest pattern that I have observed in recent years in the study area is the return of individuals of Spix’s guan to some of the forests where they inhabit in the past but were gone for several decades, although still present in the region. A sighting I never will be tired to see is the return to the gallery forest of the scarlet ibis, mostly seen near to the small pond of water that survives the dry season in the forest fragments of the study area.

The whole region is rich in water, natural and artificial lakes, morichales (palm swamps composed mainly of Mauritia flexuosa palms), and small streams and rivers. During the rainy season is common to see the white-faced whistling duck in natural and artificial lakes.

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Walking in the forest always brings surprises such as blue-crowned motmot singing alone near to the ground. The usual lek of the white-bearded manakin, close to the forest edges in the lower parts of the forest, where a group of male’s dances in a coordinated way to attract the females. Deep in the biggest forest of the study area, we also can see Wire-tailed manakin leks in the lower branches Or the surprising and cryptic sunbittern in the lower branches of big trees over the stream.

Some years ago, it was also possible to see a couple of Jabirus in the big natural lake of the area, but we haven’t heard any reports in recent years in the area. The pastures and living fences are full of other species more tolerant to open spaces like Caracara cheriway, yellow-headed caracara, or the incredible fork-tailed flycatcher with his long tail balancing on a wire fence.

Birds in the study area are threatened by the same processes as monkeys, deforestation, and fragmentation. Protecting one group is also protecting the other, so let’s protect the forest so we can continue enjoying birds and monkeys for many years to come.

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