Project Description

Southern Screamer

Chauna torquata

Animal Class: Birds

Length: 28 – 37 inches long

Weight: 4 – 11 pounds

Lifespan: Estimated at 15 years

Diet: Wild: aquatic plants, seeds, leaves, stems, crops, berries, and small invertebrates Zoo: game bird chow, fruits and vegetables

Habitat: Lowlands of southern South America. Its habitat can include wet savanna, lagoon edges, and river banks.

Description: Also known as the crested screamer, these large grey birds have a small head and hooked bill. There’s a black ring around the neck and red circles around the eyes. The long, thick legs end in slender toes with only partial webbing. Two sharp spurs protrude from the forward edges of each wing. Screamers take their name from their loud call that can be heard two miles away. When not nesting, screamers live in large flocks of up to 100. They are good swimmers but prefer to move on the ground. When in danger, they often retreat to treetops where they can view the disturbance from a distance. Although they are non-migratory, they are excellent fliers, sailing in circles until out of sight. The spurs protruding from their wings are made of bone and used for defense. Although loss of habitat and human pressures threaten screamers, they show their ability to adapt by foraging in cultivated fields.

Our Animals: Ranch and Axle