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A rare bird from the Andes that looks like a plush toy 9/7/2015 •

A rare bird from the Andes that looks like a plush toy

This funny creature that resembles a stuffed animal is actually a rare bird called Andean cock-of-the-rock. One of its distinctive features is a beak covered with feathers.


In fact, both its appearance and name are quite misleading. The bird has nothing to do with cocks – it belongs to the order of passerines and inhabits the mountain forests of South America.

The aborigines usually call it "kavanoroh" or "kabanuruh" for these names are similar to the bird's squawks. The birds are mediocre singers, but this is not a problem for them – male birds attract the opposite sex not by singing beutiful songs, but by odd mating dance. They are slowly strutting on the ground freezing for a moment and showing their proud profile, while females are watching the whole show sitting on trees. Unlike other birds that perform mating rituals, a male cock-of-the-rock never fights with its rivals during the breeding season. The birds just angrily flap with their wings and then fly apart.

The colorful plumage of the male birds doesn't attract predators because many of them do not recognize bright colors. By the way, the species exhibit sexual dimorphism – the females don't have such bright feathers and their beaks are "ordinary".

The adult birds feed mostly on fruit though sometimes they may eat insects, small reptiles and mice.

The female birds build nests in rock crevices from clay and twigs. Such a nest may weigh up to 4 kg! Unlike the male, the female usually spends nights in the nest even after the chicks left it.

#Geography

Your opinion matters
10 Comments
Iyabo Bascom
Iyabo Bascom
Fascinating. I'm a South American Native (Guyana) & I've never seen or heard of such a bird. The more you know.
1
Sep 6, 2015 9:14PM
Ian MacBrown
So thats what they look like!! I first heard of them in a crossword puzzle. :-)
0
Sep 7, 2015 2:43PM
Helen Mallazzo
Helen Mallazzo
Boy they are gorgeous!
1
Sep 7, 2015 5:02PM
Perry Hartline
Perry Hartline
Very cool! I know people who look like that only fatter, and do the same thing in their mating rituals.
3
Sep 7, 2015 10:25PM
Jean Simmons
Jean Simmons
They are beautiful, wish they could be pets.
0
Sep 7, 2015 11:09PM
Sarah Hearn-vonFoerster
Sarah Hearn-vonFoerster
I hope they are not following this quiz. Too funny.
1
Sep 8, 2015 2:00PM
oozeboy
This is a really neat animal! I hope to meet one in person.
0
Sep 11, 2015 3:05PM
Meredith Reeves
I am at a loss... The article mentions the aborigines? These are the tribes indigenous to Australia, not South america!
0
May 7, 2016 6:56PM
Lydia Coutts
Yes I had to read that a couple of times too and am still none the wiser!
0
Jun 3, 2016 5:57PM
Fernando Cortiñas
Fernando Cortiñas
It´s the RUPICOLA PERUVIANA, the national bird of Peru....
0
Jul 9, 2016 10:53PM

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