Marshland Birds of the Amazon

February 23, 2012
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Travelers on Amazon River cruises will see thousands of beautiful colors that make up this neotropic ecozone. While those splendid sights are what many come to experience in South America, the shades of black and white may be just as interesting.

While cruising on smaller excursion boats upriver toward the confluence of the Ucayali and Maronon Rivers, travelers are likely to see black-capped donacobis and white-headed marsh-tyrant.

The black-capped donacobis, or Donacobius atricapillus, is a marshland bird known for loud duets between birds, according to Cornell University Lab of Ornithology. The bird's ivory, buff and yellow underparts contrast with the black plumage that makes up its upper flanks, according to Oiseaux-Birds.com. Though little-studied, this little bird is widespread in wetlands across South America.

The white-headed marsh-tyrant is unlike any other bird, according to Cornell. Its bright white head contrasts with a black body and makes it one of the most unique tyrant-flycatchers. It prefers slow-moving or completely stagnant marshlands where it can perch on reeds and catch flying insects. BirdLife International reports that this widespread bird is evaluated as Least Concern in terms of being threatened.


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