The Toucan

Toucan

General Info: 

Other than this nominate large species (over 2 feet long), there are about forty different sub-species of Toucan that range downward to the 7 inch Toco. Beak and body colors are brilliant and varied, depending on species.  The beak coloration is designed to attract a mate.  The more colorful the beak, the more popular they are with the opposite sex.  Are their beaks to big to fly with?  No, their beaks are extremely light weight and allow for flying skills; but, they spend most of their time hopping from tree to tree or on the canopy floor.  Their beaks, however; are lined with saw like serrations and are very powerful.  These two attributes allow them to saw through fruit and crack nuts, with ease.  They use their brush like tongue to lick up the juice and nectars. They are strictly rainforest birds of Central and South America and gather in small flocks and sometimes pairs..  These beautiful birds, no matter the size or the name, is one of the most important distributor of seeds to replenish the rainforest and keep new growth on the rise; they do this by regurgitating the seeds of the fruit that they eat, thus leaving the seed viable for growth.  Their call is loud and raspy, thus making them unsuitable for small apartment living. 

Lifespan:

The nominate species (large) and most sub-species have an average live span of 10 years, in captivity.  Some have been known to live a few years longer. 

Dietary Needs:

Domestic Toucans of all species should be fed 50% fresh fruit and 50% species specific, pre-formulated food from a pet food supplier.  Do not feed your Toucan bird seed as it will kill them.  Their systems are meant to regurgitate the seed from fruits as mentioned above and they will starve on a seed only diet.  They do not digest seed so it is a waste of bird seed and a bane to your Toucan to feed it.  Do NOT supplement their diet with vitamins unless directed by an Avian Vet.  They can easily die from ingesting more vitamins than their diet supplies. (Too much of a good thing can be very bad). 

Cage Size:

Their House: Make sure that your Toucan has a  large flight cage of, at least 4 feet by 8 feet . The cage must be very tall, as toucans are most comfortable at higher elevations.  

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