Two new arrivals at Terra Natura

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Two new arrivals at Terra Natura
THE SWAINSON TOUCAN: His bill is a third of the size of his body! Photo credit Wikimedia

THE Terra Natura Benidorm family does not stop growing.

The park recently added to two new birds to its aviary – the Amazonian motmot and the Swainson toucan.

Both birds have come from a zoo in Basel, Switzerland and will live in the aviary with the park’s 300 birds of more than 80 different species – 13 of which are endangered.

This is the first Amazonian motmot at Terra Natura Benidorm.

The Amazonian motmot is a colourful bird found in the tropical regions from southern Mexico to northeastern Argentina. It is also known as the ‘pendulum bird’ because of its long racket-shaped tail that it cocks back and forth like a clock pendulum.

Its central crown is black and surrounded by a blue band. There is a black eyemask and its nape is a chesnut colour.

The Amazonian motmot lets out a low owl-like ooo-doot sound and eats small prey such as insects and lizards and will also regularly take fruit.

The Amazonion motmot at Terra Natura Benidorm is a male and around five-years-old – he measures 40 centimetres and weighs around 100 grams.

The Swainson toucan is native to Central America, ranging from southern Honduras south to northern Colombia, where it is fairly common in the wild.

One of the largest toucans in the world, it is not listed as endangered but its populations are dwindling due to the destruction and industrialisation of its habitat.

The Swainson toucan is brightly marked and has a large bill. It is mainly black with maroon hints to the head, upper back and lower breast. The face and upper breast are bright yellow, with narrow white and broader red lines forming a lower border. The upper tail is white and the lower abdomen is red. The legs are blue. The bill is diagonally divided into bright yellow and maroon.

The call of the Swainson toucan is a yelping yo-YIP, a-yip, a-yip, or a Dios te de, Dios te de, Spanish for “God give you…”).

The Swainson toucan at Terra Natura Benidorm is again a male of around five-years-old – he measures 60 centimetres with a 20-centimetre bill!

The 320,000 square metres of Terra Natura Benidorm are divided into four areas: Pangea (the park entrance area), America, Asia and Europe. Between the areas visitors can see around 1500 animals with 200 species – 50 of them in danger of extinction.

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