Crested caracara Facts

Crested caracara Facts
Crested caracara is a bird of prey that belongs to the falcon family. It can be found in the southwestern parts of the USA and in the Central and South America. Crested caracara inhabits pastures, savannas, scrublands, grasslands, open countryside and areas near the rivers. It can be occasionally seen in the forests and marshes. Unlike many other animals, deforestation is beneficial for crested caracara (these birds easily occupy newly created open areas). Crested caracaras are numerous and widespread in the wild. They are not on the list of endangered species.
Interesting Crested caracara Facts:
Crested caracara can reach 19 to 23 inches in length and 1.75 to 3.5 pounds of weight.
Crested caracara has black body and white throat and nape. Ends of dark-colored wings are marked with white patches. White tail ends with wide black bar. Face is covered with bare yellow skin. Black crown on top of the head ends with short crest.
Crested caracara has hooked, gray-colored bill, large body with long yellow legs, broad wings and long tail.
Crested caracara is national bird of Mexico. It is also known as "Mexican eagle" because of its eagle-like overall appearance.
Crested caracaras are not very fast and agile in the air (unlike other raptors). They prefer to walk or run on the ground using their long strong legs.
Crested caracara is diurnal animal (active during the day).
Crested caracara is scavenger (it eats carrions) and carnivore (meat-eater). Its diet is mostly based on the carcasses of various animals. Besides that, crested caracara often hunts and eats frogs, turtles, small mammals, birds, insects, crabs, fish and worms.
Crested caracara hunts on the ground and often steals food from other birds.
Crested caracara produces rattling, cackling calls while it throws its head backwards. This behavior is also known as head-throwback display. Produced sounds are used for communication with other birds.
Crested caracara lives solitary life outside the mating season. Small groups of crested caracaras can be occasionally seen near the large food sources.
Mating season of crested caracaras takes place during the spring and summer.
Crested caracara builds large nests made of sticks and vines in the trees (usually palm trees) or on the ground. Female lays 2 to 3 eggs that hatch after 27 to 33 days. Both parents participate in the incubation of eggs.
Crested caracaras are devoted parents. Clucking sounds and sound of snapping the branches (both types of sounds are produced with the help of their bill) are used to deter predators away from the nest.
Nearly hatched crested caracaras are born with black crown on their heads. Chicks spend first 3 months of their life in the nest before they become strong enough to fly.
Crested caracara can survive around 18 years in the wild and more than 30 years in the captivity.

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