Paradise Tanager: One of the most beautiful birds on planet

Paradise Tanager

Image credit: Flickr Drew Avery

With a brightly multi-colored body the Paradise Tanager is indeed one of the most beautiful birds and a treat to the eyes. The Paradise Tanager is endowed by seven different colors making it stand out and thus easily identifiable. That it is also a songbird further makes the Paradise Tanager much sought after by bird and nature lovers. The Paradise Tanager is found in humid tropical and sub-tropical forests of the Amazon Basin in South America and is seen in countries of Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru & Venezuela.

The bird has been categorized under 4 subspecies based on the color of their rump, which is either entirely red or a mix of red and yellow.  Known to be highly social and restless, they are usually seen in flocks of 5 – 20 and rarely stay in one area for very long.  They generally feed on fruits (fruit pulp, seeds) but also consume insects (grasshoppers, spiders, crickets), although instances of the latter are much less.

Both sexes of the Paradise Tanager look alike and it is extremely difficult to differentiate between the males and the females through appearance. Studying the bird’s behavior, it is established that the male tends to sing more often than the female. The female is primarily responsible for nest building, while the male would accompany the female when she is gathering nesting materials.  The male may even or sing or call nearby the nesting site while the female is busy building the nest. There have also been some reports where both the male and female have jointly built the nest.

The sheer brilliant colors have also ensured that Paradise Tanagers have been captured from their natural habitat to be made pets although a great deal of high and proper daily care is required to ensure stable health.

Some reports suggest a declining trend in the population of Paradise Tanager, however, they are yet not considered as `threatened species’.

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