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More Information on Birds
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Keel-Billed Toucan
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The keel-billed toucan, Ramphastos sulfuratus, is a South American bird with a huge beak. This social bird lives in small flocks in lowland tropical rainforests. It is a poor flyer, and moves mostly by hopping around trees. Toucans roost in holes in trees. They have a croaking call that sounds like RRRRK.

Anatomy: The toucan is about 20 inches (50 cm) long. The toucan's enormous bill is up to one-third of its length. The bill is brightly colored, light-weight, and edged with toothed margins. It has four toes on each foot; two toes face forwards and two face backwards. The legs are short but strong. Males are slightly larger than females, but their coloration is similar.

Diet: Toucan eat mostly fruit, but also eat bird eggs, insects, and tree frogs. Toucans swallow fruit whole and then regurgitate the seeds; this disperses viable (living) seeds in the forest.

Reproduction: Females lay 1 to 4 white eggs in each clutch (a set of eggs laid in one nesting period). The eggs are laid in a hollow tree cavity. Both parents incubate the eggs, and both parents feed the chicks.

Classification: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Chordata, Class Aves, Order Piciformes, Family Ramphastidae, Genus Ramphastos, Species R. sulfuratus.



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