Chestnut Aracari

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Common Name: Chestnut-eared Aracari
Scientific Name: Pteroglossus castanotis

Size: 17–18 ½ inches (43-47 cm)

Habitat: South America. The range of the Chestnut-eared Aracari is the southern Amazon Basin, especially the southwestern of this region. It is also found in the eastern Andean foothills; a narrowing range extension enters central-southern Colombia by 900 kilometers.

The southern Amazon Basin range narrows in the southeast to only the upstream half-headwaters of the north-flowing Amazon River tributaries. This range continues southeastwards into the central and southern cerrado and ends in the Paraná River region in eastern Paraguay, southeastern Brazil and the extreme northeast of Argentina.

Status: Least Concern. Global Population: Population size has not been quantified but this species’ population appears to be in decline. Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable.

Diet: Fruits, insects, frogs, lizards and bird eggs. Fruits are taken from the branch, sometimes by hanging upside-down. It searches for food in bark crevices and all cavities in trees. The Chestnut-eared Araçari forages usually in the lower canopy and understory, shrubs and trees. These birds usually stay well away from the larger toucans, because a hierarchy by size is often established at food sources.

Nesting: Males have black crowns whereas females are more rufous in color. Male beaks are also slightly longer. It is an attractively patterned species with a large yellow and black bill, a pale eye surrounded by blue facial skin, dark upper-parts, and a yellow belly divided by a red band.

The breeding season varies according to the range. It often nests in groups with some other pairs, up to 10-12 birds. The nest is often placed in old woodpecker hole. This cavity is probably enlarged by excavating, thanks to the large bill.

The female lays 2-4 white eggs. The incubation lasts about two weeks, mainly by the female, but the male may help when she goes out to feed. Both parents feed the chicks. The young fledge one month after hatching and form a family group with the adults.

Cool Facts: Ischnoceran lice found on the Chestnut-eared Aracari were first described as Austrophilopterus cancellosus castanotus, but these parasites are actually indistinguishable from those on most other Pteroglossus, and today united with them in Austrophilopterus flavirostris.

It has the widest distribution of any aracari species and is one of the most common of the toucans.

Found in Songbird ReMix Toucans 2

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