Saturday, August 6, 2011

Birds of the Pantanal

A few weeks ago, we had the privilege of traveling a few hours away from our home into the Pantanal.  The Pantanal is the world's largest tropical wetland.  The Pantanal attracts many tourists, but we weren't limited to the tourist spots - we got to go behind the scenes!  We had to drive quite a ways off the main highway, down dirt roads, and along the river's edge before we got to our final destination (a fisherman's home at the river's edge.)
  There are about 1,000 bird species in the Pantanal, and we were able to see quite a few just in our one day there.  Here are some of the beautiful creatures that Omar was able to capture with his camera.   

Tuiuiú (two-you-you)
This bird is our state bird.  (I think they look a little pre-historic!) The males can get as tall as 5 ft. and have a wingspan of 10 ft.  It's the tallest flying bird in South America, and their nests are can be several yards in diameter!

Tuiuiú in nest

These parakeets are larger than a domesticated parakeet, but not quite as large as a parrot.  They flew around in large groups and made quite a lot of noise!  When they flew through the air, you could see all the beautiful colors of their plumage.

parakeets in flight

This bird's name literally means, "I want, I want!" It was a neat bird (at first) until it became very territorial and tried to dive-bomb Omar several times.

This one stayed near the water.  Check out those long toes!

Recognize this bird?  Yep, it's a kingfisher.  There are MANY different types of kingfishers throughout Brazil.  This one had just made a catch, and was resting before he took it back to his nest in the cliff below us where we could hear several baby kingfishers squawking for a bite.

Omar tried to get a closer shot of this large pink bird, but he didn't seem to be very sociable.  It never came very close to us.

When Omar first saw this bird, it was soaring so high that it was almost out of sight.  It had an incredibly loud screech like an eagle.  It circled for a long time before finally descending into a swampy area nearby.  

(Tachã on the ground)

Unidentified  - (Any Suggestions?)

Fortunately for us, this guy was on the opposite side of the river from us!  There were several caiman on the river that day.  I'm not sure if it was coincidence or not, but they were all facing our direction.....hmmm.

A caiman trying to be sneaky!


We had been resting in the shade of a tree next to the river all day, and didn't realize until late afternoon that these bats were right above our heads!  

It was a beautiful place full of beautiful animals (well..... maybe not the bats.)  It was probably the remote area that we've ever been, and we'd love to go back and see more of it!


  1. Loved these pictures...until I got to the bats!!! Eww! The rest of the birds were so pretty, I love birds. Thanks for the great pictures!

  2. These pictures are amazing...they turned our beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thank you once again for putting a "face" on Brazil! We love seeing the people, culture, and wildlife...such beautiful pictures by a super photographer:-) Thank you for sharing! Have a wonderful day and keep these updates coming...we love hearing from our missionaries!



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