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Post Bird Week Wrap-Up: Venezuela's Guacharacas
Created by John Eipper on 08/04/19 3:53 AM

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Bird Week Wrap-Up: Venezuela's Guacharacas (José Ignacio Soler, Venezuela, 08/04/19 3:53 am)

John E. asked whether the macaws of Caracas have become a possible source of food for "hungry Caraqueños." Despite the critical situation of the people, fortunately and apparently from their friendly behavior it does not appear that the birds are being used to feed the population. If guacamayas were being hunted, they would likely be much more evasive and unfriendly.

Besides there is another tasty kind of wild bird, la guacharaca (I do not know the English word), very abundant in the country and there are plenty in Caracas. They are the size of a chicken, not very colorful. Most are dark brown with markings of pale red, blue and grey. They are very noisy as well, particularly at 6 or 7 in the morning. They eat almost every fruit and seed and easily get into domesticated bird food. They can be hunted very easily or even domesticated in stockyards.

According to natives from the jungle (the Wuaraos tribe) their song sounds like "Amanece, amanece!" (It's dawn!) in their language, but most certain their name comes from the onomatopoeia of the repetitive sound when singing.

The peculiarity about these birds is that also they mate for life, live in family groups and care for their babies for a long time. We had had the same family in our garden for many years, which is not rare if they do not sense danger. They are very loyal and might follow you everywhere, and it is said that can be very physically protective and aggressive if they feel you are threatened. Fortunately I have never been in such a situation to prove it.

I attach a picture.

JE comments:  Tastes just like chicken?  I believe they are known as chachalacas in English, and belong to the galliform order, as do chickens and turkeys.  "Galliform" literally means "cock-/rooster-like."

See how much we've learned during WAIS Bird Week '19?

Venezuela`s guacharaca

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