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Gray-Winged Trumpeter

Scientific Classification

Common Name
gray-winged trumpeter, common trumpeter
Kingdom
Animalia
Phylum
Chordata
Class
Aves
Order
Gruiformes
Family
Psophiidae
Genus Species
Psophia (loud noise) crepitans (rattle or clatter)

Fast Facts

Description
The gray-winged trumpeter is a tall bird with a mainly black body. It has purple, green, and bronze on the lower neck and wing converts. The outer tertials and secondary feathers are gray.
Size
Approximately 43 to 53 cm (17.2 to 21.2 in.)
Weight
Approximately 1 kg (2.2 lbs.)
Diet
These birds feed predominantly on ripe fruit on the forest floor, but will also take arthropods and small vertebrates such as snakes.
Incubation
Approximately 4 to 7 eggs
Range
The species can be found north of the Amazon River in Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Columbia, Venezuela, French Guiana, Suriname and Guyana.
Habitat
These birds can be found in dense, lowland, moist forest away from human settlements.
Population
Global: has not been quantified, but this species is described as uncommon. The population appears to be declining but is not severely fragmented.
Status 
IUCN: Near Threatened
CITES: Not listed
USFWS: Not listed

Fun Facts

  1. The trumpeter's name probably originates from the deep low sounds they use to communicate. One sound is used as a flocking call while the other is a threatening call.
  2. Gray-winged trumpeters are non-migratory terrestrial birds.
  3. These birds perform elaborate and noisy courtship dances involving strutting, leaping, and even somersaults in their excitement.
  4. These birds are polyandrous, meaning that the females may mate with more than one male.
  5. Trumpeters rarely fly, but can run fast if necessary.

Ecology and Conservation

The primary threat to this species is accelerating deforestation in the Amazon basin as land is cleared for cattle ranching and soy production, facilitated by expansion of the road network.

In some areas, trumpeters are considered game birds. These birds are neither afraid of humans, nor are they good fliers. This makes them prime targets for hunters.

In some parts of their range gray-winged trumpeters have been hunted to extinction.


Bibliography

Ellis, D. H., Gee, G. F., and C. Mirande. 1996. Cranes: Their Biology, Husbandry, and Conservation. Dept. Of Int., Nat'l Bio. Serv., Washington, D.C.

Rutgers, A. and K.A. Norris (Eds.). Encyclopedia of Aviculture. Vol. 1. Poole. Blanford Press. 1979.

InfoNatura: Birds, mammals, and amphibians of Latin America [web application]. 2004. Version 3.1 . Arlington, Virginia (USA): NatureServe. Available: natureserve.org/infonatura.

BirdLife International. 2016. Psophia crepitans. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T45478181A95158441. http://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T45478181A95158441.en/. Downloaded on 15 November 2018.