25 Beautiful Birds in the Amazon Rainforest

With over 1,800 species, of which 139 are endemic, the birds of Peru are spectacularly various.

So it’s no shock that the nation has emerged as a favourite amongst individuals who love Amazon Rainforest Animals, particularly birdwatchers.

Locations corresponding to Manu Nationwide Park, Colca Canyon, and the Islas Ballestas have all develop into more and more in style ecotourism points of interest in recent times. 

Nonetheless, the Peruvian Amazon is arguably the nation’s best hotbed of unimaginable avian exercise.

There have been round 575 species of Amazon birds recognized, simply inside one specific 5,500-hectare part of the rainforest.

By comparability, solely 700 chicken species are present in the entire forests in North America.

You might write a whole e book about all the gorgeous species avid birdwatchers might see throughout per week of exploring the biodiverse Amazon rainforest basin.

However right here’s a short information to a couple dozen lovely birds within the Amazon Rainforest that you simply could possibly spot throughout a Peruvian Amazon river cruise.

10 Most Beautiful Forests: Amazon
Amazon Rainforest, Photograph courtesy CIFOR

Birds within the Amazon Rainforest Information

  1. Amazon Kingfisher
  2. Black Collared Hawk
  3. Capped Heron
  4. Dusky Headed Parakeet
  5. Golden-Headed Manakin
  6. Gray-Headed Kite
  7. Guans
  8. Harpy Eagle
  9. Hoatzin
  10. Horned Screamer
  11. Hummingbirds
  12. Jabiru Stork
  13. King Vulture
  14. Macaws
  15. Motmots
  16. Parakeets/Parrots
  17. Potoos
  18. Puffbirds
  19. Scale-Crested Pygmy Tyrant
  20. Toucans
  21. Trogons
  22. Yellow-Headed Caracara
Amazon Kingfisher - birds in the Amazon
Amazon Kingfisher by way of Canva


Discovered all through the American tropics from southern Mexico to northern Argentina, the Amazon Kingfisher seems to be like a bigger model of the Inexperienced Kingfisher.

They will develop as much as 12 inches lengthy and three to 4 occasions as heavy.

They’ve oily inexperienced heads, shaggy crests, white collars, and lack the white wing markings of their inexperienced cousins.

Look ahead to them on rocks and branches near the water, the place they feed on fish and amphibians.

READ MORE: 35 Beautiful Birds of Hawaii and the Polynesian Triangle

Black Collared Hawk - birds in the rainforest
Black Collared Hawk by way of Canva


Present in Central and South America in addition to Trinidad & Tobago, this lovely chicken of prey inhabits subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests and subtropical or tropical swamps.

It may be recognized by a white head tinged with buff, with black shaft streaks on the crown; a vibrant cinnamon-rufous physique that grows paler on the chest, with a black crescent on the higher breast; a again with black shaft stripes; and black tail feathers barred with rufous.

You’ll usually see them swooping right down to feed on fish, small lizards, bugs and rodents.

Capped Heron in the Peruvian Amazon - amazon forest birds
Capped Heron within the Peruvian Amazon by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


This colourful chicken is discovered in lots of components of Central America and South America, sometimes round rivers, swamps and freshwater lakes.

The Capped Heron is noteworthy for the sensible blue and pink colours on its beak, vibrant yellow feathers on its neck and underbelly, and lengthy, skinny plumes coming off its head, which make it look somewhat like a refined distant cousin to Africa’s famed Secretary Hen. 

Dusky Headed Parakeet in the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest - birds in rainforest
Dusky Headed Parakeet within the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


A typical sighting in each the Amazon and home chicken cages, this verdant inexperienced, blue and gray neotropical parrot is also called the Weddell’s conure or dusky-headed conure.

They like semi-open wooded habitats within the Western Amazon, however are additionally usually seen in coffee plantations and in colonies across the Lima coast.

Social, energetic and entertaining, they are typically found in pairs or small teams, feeding on fruit, seeds, flowers and bugs.

Golden-Headed Manakin
Golden-Headed Manakin by way of Canva


One among round 60 species of manakins discovered within the American tropics, the Golden-Headed Manakin is a colourful cutie sometimes measuring about 3.7 inches lengthy and weighing lower than half an oz..

Females and juveniles look much like feminine White-Bearded Manakins, however grownup males are black-bodied with a golden cap, white and crimson thighs, pink legs and yellow invoice.

Generally present in low elevation forests and plantations, their leaping, sliding mating ritual and buzzing zit-zit name are a surprise to behold. 

Grey Headed Kite in the Peruvian Amazon - birds in the amazon
Gray Headed Kite within the Peruvian Amazon by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


This lovely raptor species is present in open woodland and swamp-like forests starting from japanese Mexico and Trinidad right down to Peru, Bolivia and Argentina.

The grownup has a gray head and legs, blue invoice, black higher physique, white underbelly, and a black tail with two or three white bars.

They’re usually noticed on excessive perches whereas trying to find reptiles, frogs and bugs, with a putting profile and a particular mewling keow-sounding name. 

Blue-throated Piping Guan - rainforest birds
Blue-throated Piping Guan by way of Canva


Associated to curassows, these turkey-like birds are discovered within the subtropical and tropical forests of northern South America.

There are two guan species you may even see within the Peruvian Amazon.

The Spix’s Guan is called after German naturalist Johann Baptist von Spix and boasts brown feathers speckled with white and a vivid crimson wattle.

The Blue-throated Piping Guan is most black with a greenish shimmer, with white wing patches, white fleck on the chest, a white crest, and blue beaks and throats. 

American Harpy Eagle
American Harpy Eagle by way of Canva


Also referred to as the American Harpy Eagle to differentiate it from the same species present in Papua New Guinea, this fearsome chicken of prey is the most important and strongest raptor within the Amazon rainforest.

Females are larger than males, weighing as much as 22 kilos and measuring as much as 40 inches lengthy, with a wingspan of six to seven toes.

They’ve acquired pale gray, double-crested heads;  broad black breast bands; white bellies; slate black uppers; and black tails with three gray bands on prime and three white bands beneath. 

Two Hoatzins in the Peruvian Amazon - birds from the amazon
Two Hoatzins within the Peruvian Amazon by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


Also referred to as the Canje Pheasant (or punk-rock chicken), Hoatzin are genetically enigmatic, and there’s been intense scientific debate about their evolutionary connections to different species.

The pheasant-sized bizarre chicken, whose chicks possess claws on two of their wing digits, can be referred to as the Stinkbird as a result of manure-like odor attributable to its distinctive digestive system.

Their noises are simply as odd, together with a weird number of groans, croaks, hisses and grunts that are sometimes related to its physique actions.

Horned Screamer - birds of the amazon rainforest
Horned Screamer by way of Canva


These large (round 3 toes lengthy), odd birds might appear to be recreation birds, however they’re really associated to geese, geese, and swans.

You’ll possible hear them earlier than you see them: Because the title suggests, they’ve a loud, echoing name.

Dwelling in vegetated marshes, the place they feed on water crops, Horned Screamers are principally black with white specks.

The lengthy, horn-like construction that protruding of their crown is exclusive, loosely connected to the cranium, and grows (and breaks) repeatedly.

Fork-tailed Woodnymph Hummingbird - Amazon rainforest bird
Fork-tailed Woodnymph Hummingbird by way of Canva


For those who love hummingbirds, the Peruvian Amazon provides greater than a dozen dazzling species which can be just about assured to thrill.

Their gem-like colours embody just about each coloration of the rainbow.

Highlights embrace the blue crown and fuchsia neck of the Lengthy-billed Starthroat, the vivid inexperienced of the aptly-named Glittering-throated Emerald, the putting royal purple breast of the Fork-tailed Woodnymph, and the shimmering aqua shades of the Blue-chinned Sapphire. 

Jabiru Stork
Jabiru Stork by way of Canva


The tallest flying chicken in Central and South America, this species additionally has the continent’s second-longest wingspan (after the Andean Condor).

Discovered within the Americas from Mexico right down to Argentina, east of the Andes Mountains, they’re sometimes present in massive teams close to rivers and ponds, the place they spend a lot of their time feasting of fish, mollusks and amphibians.

Measuring 4 to 5 toes lengthy, with black heads, white-feathered our bodies and a vibrant crimson neck pouch, they make putting photograph topics.

King Vulture
King Vulture by way of Canva


There are 4 vulture species discovered within the Peruvian Amazon, however this colourful character deserves the crown for many lovely.

With a spread that covers a lot of Central and South America, these birds may be present in historic hieroglyphic texts of the Pre-Colombian Maya civilization.

They’re massive and predominately white, with gray to black tail feathers, an orange fleshy caruncle on the beak, and a colourful bald head that will embrace blue, orange, purple, crimson, and yellow. 

Scarlet Macaws in Flight in the Peruvian Amazon
Scarlet Macaws in Flight within the Peruvian Amazon by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


From Blue-and-Yellow and Scarlet Macaws to Inexperienced-Winged and Chestnut-Fronted Macaws, these New World parrots will simply rank among the many most colourful birds you’ll see within the Peruvian Amazon.

As a rule you’ll hear them squawking loudly lengthy earlier than they become visible, often flying over in mating pairs.

You may additionally spot them in teams within the timber, feeding on seeds, nuts, fruits, leaves, flowers and stems.

Motmot Bird
Motmot by way of Canva


Passerine birds associated to Kingfishers and Bee-Eaters, these neotropical forest-dwellers.

These Amazon Birds are identified for his or her colourful plumage, massive payments and lengthy tails (some with a racket-like tip) that they use for wagging at predators and, within the case of males, attracting mates.

Dwelling in colonies of as much as 40 paired people, Motmots sometimes nest in riverbank tunnels, and feed on every little thing from fruit and bugs to frogs, lizards and different small prey. 

Festive Parrot
Festive Parrot by way of Canva


Of all of the Amazon chicken species you may see throughout a small ship river cruise, few elicit extra pleasure than the handfuls of colourful parakeet and parrot species.

Parakeets (whose title is derived from perroquet, the French phrase for parrot) are usually smaller and have a tendency to breed in teams, however the phrases parrot and parakeet are sometimes used interchangeably.

Amazon parakeet species embrace the gray face of the Dusky-headed Parakeet, the putting reds of the Maroon-tailed Parakeet, and the sensible blues of the Cobalt-winged Parakeet.

So far as Amazon parrots go, they arrive Black-headed, Blue-headed, Blue-winged, Orange-cheeked, Orange-winged, White-bellied, and Yellow-crowned.

My favourite is the aptly-named Festive Parrot, whose face seems to be as if he’s simply returned from an Indian Holi celebration. 

Great Potoo Bird
Nice Potoo by way of Canva


There are two species of potoos– the Frequent Potoo and the Nice Potoo– discovered within the Peruvian Amazon.

However you’ll possible want an eagle-eyed naturalist information armed with binoculars if you wish to discover them.

That’s as a result of these owl-like birds (which are literally intently associated to nightjars and frogmouths) are masters of camouflage.

Their disproportionally massive heads and mottled brown and gray feathers enable them to spend the day perched on stumps or branches, with eyes half-closed, just about unnoticeable with the bare eye.

At evening, they use their big eyes and large mouths to feed, totally on flying bugs. 

Puffbird by way of Canva


Shy and secretive by nature, these tropical tree-dwelling insectivores may be discovered from Mexico down by way of South America.

However, with their choice for forested habitats, their best species range may be discovered within the Amazon Basin.

They could lack the iridescent colours of their cousins, the Jacamars, however the Puffbirds’ unfastened plumage, brief tails, and brightly-colored payments and eyes give them simple attraction.

They not often vocalize, preferring to sit down nonetheless and quiet whereas ready for bugs on which to prey, however you may hear their repeated, high-pitched whistles at daybreak and nightfall. 

Scale-crested pygmy tyrant Bird in the Amazon Rainforest
Scale-crested pygmy tyrant by TonyCastro – Personal work, CC BY-SA 4.0


The mascot of the Mongabay environmental science web site, this cute chicken is present in tropical forests in Central America and the northern a part of South America.

They’re tiny and troublesome to see within the wild, as they like trying to find meals within the darker a part of the forest.

However they’re lovely birds, named for the crest of feathers which can be often solely displayed after they’re attracting mates or attempting to make themselves look larger as a result of a menace. 

Toucan in the Peruvian Amazon
Toucan within the Peruvian Amazon by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


From the 11.5-inch tall Lettered Aracari to the 29-inch Toco Toucan, this household of round 40 totally different species may be discovered all through Central and South America and usually rank among the many hottest sightings within the Peruvian Amazon.

Maybe it’s their vibrant markings and big colourful payments, or maybe it’s simply the truth that it reminds folks of a favourite childhood breakfast cereal.

Regardless, you’re nearly sure to see them, both nesting in hollows or feeding on fruits within the Amazon timber. 

Trogan Bird in Amazon Rainforest by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett
Trogan Hen in Amazon Rainforest by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


In terms of essentially the most colourful birds of the Peruvian Amazon, the trogons give the toucans and parrots/parakeets a run for his or her cash.

There’s the Blue-crowned Trogon, whose blue-black head and crimson breast and eye-ring are offset by a black and white barred tail.

There’s the Inexperienced-backed (a.okay.a. Amazonian White-tailed) Trogon, who boasts a darkish blue head, yellow-orange stomach, and fantastically vermiculated tail.

However my favourite is the Pavonine Quetzal, which is also called the Peacock Trogon or the Pink-billed Prepare Bearer.

It’s recognized by its metallic inexperienced uppers, crimson stomach and invoice, and lengthy tails with black feathers beneath.

Yellow-Headed Caracara bird in Rainforest
Yellow-Headed Caracara by Bret Love & Mary Gabbett


A part of the falcon household, this lovely chicken of prey is pretty frequent all through tropical and subtropical South America and southern Central America.

Measuring 16-18 inches, they’ve yellowish-brown heads and underparts, black eye streaks, with brown backs and wings mottled with pale patches and a barred tail of brown and cream.

They’re gradual in comparison with different falcons, scavenging for meals starting from amphibians and reptiles to carrion and even ticks from cattle.  –Bret Love

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