Gray-breasted Mountain Toucan

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Common Name: Gray-breasted Mountain Toucan
Scientific Name: Andigena hypoglauca

Size: 18 - 19 inches (46-48 cm)

Habitat: South America; Columbia, Ecuador and Peru. They are found primarily on the east slope of the Andes, from Nariño, south Colombia, through Ecuador south to Cuzco, south-east Peru. On the west slope of the Andes it occurs in Caldas and Cauca, Colombia, and Azuay and Loja, south-west Ecuador

They are found in humid highland forest, often spending much of their time in the tallest trees.

Status: Near Threatened. Global Population: unknown. A moderately rapid and on-going population decline is suspected owing to habitat loss. Its habitat in Colombia has been subject to widespread and severe deforestation over a prolonged period as a result of agricultural expansion, whereas the east Andes of Ecuador and north Peru are under intense pressure from conversion for agriculture and cattle pasture, mining operations and logging. In Peru, there is an alarmingly high rate of deforestation in the north Cordillera de Colán for the cultivation of cash crops, and widespread forest loss on montane slopes in the Marañón drainage. Montane forests in south-east Peru are perhaps the most intact within its range, but even these have been locally affected by domestic grazing animals, burning, cutting for fuel and clearance for cultivation

Diet: Fruits and berries. A wide variety of fruits and berries are eaten and this species is often more willing than most largish toucans to leave the canopy to eat raspberries near the base of the trees. They tend to remain quiet while flying and are known to mix often with other birds while foraging, including larger species of tanagers, thrushes and icterids, both behavior unusual in toucans.

Nesting: Males slightly larger than females. This species is distinguished from other mountain-toucans by its colorful bill: red and black at the tip and yellow-green at the base, where there is a black, thumbprint-shaped mark. The black head is set off from the chestnut-brown back by a pale gray collar.

The behavior has not been well studied. Birds feed alone or in small groups of up to six individuals. They move quietly, not like most toucans. They have been seen feeding with other bird species including tanagers, thrushes, and blackbirds. Little is known about their breeding habits.

Cool Facts: This is one of four species of mountain toucan. It occurs in several protected areas, including Las Cajas National Recreation Area and Podocarpus National Park, Ecuador.

Found in Songbird ReMix Toucans 2

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