The Pantanal has more birds than God. That’s a joke of course but there are so many birds in this part of Brazil that is hard to wrap the mind around it.
Approximately 3,000 species of birds are found in South America. Researchers estimate that 1,600 of the species are found in Brazil and more than 650 of them are specifically found in the Pantanal. This place is a bird watchers’ paradise!
I have my favorites, of course. The kingfisher (we saw Amazon, Green, and Ringed) is an amazing bird that likes to be around water and goes fishing for its food. The blue-fronted parrot has a call that (to me) sounds like a cat. I was never able to snap a photo of it because they are usually flying or hiding behind leaves.
The larger birds in the Pantanal are impressive. These include the Jabaru Stork, Roadside Hawk, Black-Collared Hawk, Bare-faced Carrasow, Southern Screamer, and the Cara Cara.
We were able to snap shots of the rare Common Potoo and the Spotted Puffbird. The Common Potoo is nocturnal and has grey and brownish feathers that allow it to blend perfectly into a tree. The bird stands still in the fork of a tree with its eyes closed during the day, resembling a branch. If someone or something comes around the Potoo during the day, it will not move to take a look, instead, it will look out of the very corner of its eyes to see what’s there. Every time we came back to look for the Potoo, it was in the same position as the day before. Our guide thinks it has a nest in the tree with eggs or little ones. Common Potoos hunt insects at night and are often mistaken for owls. No one knows if the Potoo is actually a rare bird or if it is just so hard to see that people believe that it is rare. Can you find it in the photo below?
*Photos were taken by me.