Keel-billed toucan

The national bird of Belize, this majestic bird will make your head turn

Haui Ared

A stunning and iconic bird species native to the tropical forests of Latin America. Renowned for its vibrant plumage and oversized bill, the keel-billed toucan is not only a beloved resident of Belize but also holds cultural significance as the country’s national bird.

In addition to Belize, the keel-billed toucan can be found across a wide range, spanning from southern Mexico to Colombia, where it inhabits lush tropical forests characterized by dense vegetation and abundant fruit-bearing trees. This diverse habitat provides ample food sources for the toucan, which has an omnivorous diet consisting of fruits, seeds, insects, invertebrates, lizards, snakes, and even the eggs of small birds.

One of the most striking features of the keel-billed toucan is its enormous and brightly colored bill, which exhibits a stunning array of hues, including green, blue, red, and orange. This remarkable bill serves multiple purposes, including foraging for food, regulating body temperature, and communicating with other toucans.

Despite its large size and seemingly cumbersome bill, the keel-billed toucan is remarkably agile and adept at navigating through the forest canopy. Its powerful flight enables it to travel efficiently between feeding sites, while its sharp claws and strong bill allow it to grasp branches and manipulate food items with ease.

Breeding behavior in keel-billed toucans typically involves the formation of monogamous pairs, with both parents participating in nest construction, incubation of eggs, and care of the offspring. Nesting sites are often located in tree hollows or abandoned woodpecker nests, providing protection for the vulnerable chicks.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Belize
2021
Colombia
2021
Costa Rica
2021
Guatemala
2021
Honduras
2021
Mexico
2021
Nicaragua
2021
Panama
2021
Venezuela
2021

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd / Flock

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No