Pharomachrus – Quetzals
Fierce competitors for the title of the world’s most exotic and beautiful bird
When not reproducing, they typically live alone, but when eating, they may congregate in large numbers in a single tree. Midday is when they forage most regularly. While the chicks eat primarily insects and a few fruits, the adults tend to eat a more fruit-based diet.
Even though these birds specialize in eating fruit, they also eat frogs, lizards, insects (especially wasps, ants, and larvae), and other animals.
Frugivory makes these birds very important as seed dispersers throughout the ecosystem they live in.
These birds are famed for their beautiful feathers and, as a result, are a prime target for trappers and hunters in the illegal wildlife trade, where they are often sold as illegal pets, and the birds that are unable to survive are stripped of their prized feathers, which are sold later.