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Photo of a blue and yellow Macaw perched on a limb

Macaw

Subfamily:  Arinae

Distribution:  Central and South America

Weight:  200-1700 g

Size: 12 - 40 inches in length

Distinct Markings: Macaws are beautiful, brilliantly colored members of the parrot family. The coloring is suited to life in Central and South American rain forests, with their green canopies and colorful fruits and flowers. The birds boast large, powerful beaks that easily crack nuts and seeds, while their dry, scaly tongues have a bone inside them that makes them an effective tool for tapping into fruits. Macaws also have gripping toes that they use to latch onto branches and to grab, hold, and examine items. The birds sport graceful tails that are typically very long.

 

There are 17 species of macaws, and several are endangered. These playful birds are popular pets, and many are illegally trapped for that trade. The rain forest homes of many species are also disappearing at an alarming rate.

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