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Golden-headed Quetzal.jpg
Golden-headed quetzal
Scientific classification
de la Llave. 1832
Gould, 1858

A quetzal is a brightly colored bird in the trogon family.[1] They are found in forests and woodlands, especially in humid highlands.

These birds live in the Americas. The word "quetzal" was first used for the resplendent quetzal, a famous long-tailed quetzal that lives in Central America. The resplendent quetzal is the national symbol of Guatemala.

They are strongly sexually dimorphic, as usual with the males being brighter. Parts of the female plumageis brown or grey. These largely solitary birds feed on fruits, berries, insects and small vertebrates (such as frogs). Even with their famous bright plumage, they can be hard to see in their natural wooded habitats.

In Aztec times, the quetzal was worshiped as the god of the air. Its long tail feathers, which can grow up to 2 ft (60 cm) long, were highly prized for making into costume and head-dresses.[2]

Species[change | change source]

Resplendent Quetzal

Pavonine Quetzal

Crested Quetzal

Eared Quetzal

White-Tipped Quetzal

Golden Headed Quetzal

References[change | change source]

  1. Restall R.L; Rodner C. & Lentino M. 2006. Birds of northern South America. Christopher Helm. ISBN 0-7136-7243-9 (vol 1); ISBN 0-7136-7242-0 (vol 2).
  2. Ganeri, Anita (2000). Jungle animals: over 100 questions and answers to things you want to know. ISBN 0-75254-909-X.