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Caw! Caw! Meet the Macaw!

Certainly one of the most colorful members of the parrot family is the Macaw. Their brightly colored feathers make them easy to spot in the rainforest jungles where they can be seen gathering in large flocks or flying about.

Macaws are social birds; it is not uncommon to see them in a group of as many as 10 to 30 in a single tree. They communicate through a series of calls, squawks and screams that help them to mark territory, identify each other, or to just say hello. Some types of macaws can even imitate human speech sounds and words!

bird in rainforest Macaw
Look at the beak on this bird! The macaw’s beak gets a good workout everyday as the bird uses it to crack nuts and seeds for its meals.

To keep their balance in the rainforest, the macaw has toes that grip tightly onto branches. These toes also help them to inspect different items such as fruit. Macaws are not selfish creatures either; they will often share their food happily with others. Another favorite group activity is grooming the feathers of another macaw.

Something to Think About: Macaws make popular pets. Can you see why? Why might taking Macaws from their environment hurt the macaws and the rainforest ecosystem?

Want to Learn More? Visit Learning About the Rainforest; and The Rainforest Alliance for more information about Macaws.

Rainforest Kids Science curriculum connection: Unit 3, Chapter 4, Lesson 1, Grades K-5

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