Nature And Life

A BLACK CAPPED FRIAR COVERED IN A BEAUTIFUL BLEND OF IRIDESCENT ORANGE, GREEN, AND BLUE!

A BLACK CAPPED FRIAR COVERED IN A BEAUTIFUL BLEND OF IRIDESCENT ORANGE, GREEN, AND BLUE!
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A beautiful orange, green, and blue patterned bird residing on an island where it is the only member of its species!

MEET THE TRINIDAD MOTMOT

The Trinidadian motmot (Momotus bahamensis) is a beautiful bird with a beautiful head pattern, a black beak, and a long, racket-like tail. Their backs and wings are green, while the upper part of the tail is usually green and the lower part is blue around the tip. The middle pair of rectrices is longer than the rest of the tail feathers and has a racket-like tip. The underparts are rufous-brown with blue and black wings on the upper breast. The crown is black, with a broad band of azure and blue down from the beak to the crown at the back, forming an incomplete crown. There is a narrow blue stripe under the black mask that falls to one side on the side of the head. The neck is a wash. Dark red eyes. Their legs and feet are gray.

Males and females look very similar to one another.

Juvenile birds do resemble adult birds but lack the blue and black upper breast feathers of adult birds. Their mask is mostly sooty-black and lacks the adult’s long racquet-like tail.

Photo Courtesy of PEHart / CC BY-SA 2.0

The Trinidad Motmot is confined to and endemic to the islands of Trinidad and Tobago.

The Trinidad Motmot is found in the interior of the lowland evergreen forest on Trinidad. In Tobago, it is mainly found in cacao plantations, sandy beaches, and open habitats including pastures with large trees, being more prevalent in Tobago than in Trinidad.

The Trinidad Motmot likes to dine on invertebrates found in the leaf litter on the ground. It follows the swarms of army ants or small birds which help it to locate spiders, insects, and other various invertebrates. It may occasionally catch small reptiles and young birds, but it will also take mollusks and earthworms.

In Tobago, it feeds mainly on fruits in wet and dry seasons, and it takes dung beetles and cicadas during the rainy season.

During the breeding season, April to May in Trinidad, and March to July in Tobago, the Trinidad Tobago builds a nest in a burrow built into an earth bank by both sexes, the length varies from three to five meters. The entrance is usually well hidden behind a tree trunk or roots, with a new burrow being built each year which explains to some extent why the couple remains together all year. Three white eggs are laid within the burrow which is incubated by both sexes. The young fledge around four weeks after hatching. The young are able to forage on their own once they leave the burrow.

The species is much more common in Tobago where it is a tourist attraction. In Trinidad, it is considered shy and uncommon. The population size is unknown, but it is suspected to be stable.

YOU CAN WATCH THIS BIRD RIGHT HERE IN THE VIDEO BELOW:

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