Antpittas – A Call for Photos and information!

This week we’re hearing from Harold Greeney, author of the forthcoming Helm Identification Guide, Antpittas who is offering you the chance to contribute to his book, published by Bloomsbury Wildlife.

In recent years the nesting behavior of antpittas has become fairly well known. Concurrently, the development of feeding stations has made antpittas go from one of the least photographed to one of the best photographed group of birds out there. This latter change now provides us with the perfect opportunity to learn something about what happens to baby antpittas AFTER they leave the nest. As an example, let’s take one of the showiest (and rarest) of the antpittas, the Jocotoco Antpitta. Here is an adult feeding their youngster in early August of 2009.

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Although its plumage did not even remotely resemble that of an adult, it left the nest a few days after this photo was taken. Flash forward 5 months and here is our little guy, still with its parents, in mid-January of 2010.

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Help us figure out how the plumage develops in the Jocotoco Antpitta and other species!  Every photo helps to complete the timeline. For the Jocotoco Antpitta we are tracking plumage development in fledglings from 2006 to present. So, if you visited Tapichalaca and had the chance to take a few snaps, please send in your photos. In addition, at feeding stations across the Andes, we are beginning to track juveniles and plumage changes for many other species!  To learn how to contribute your images for possible inclusion in the book I am writing for Bloomsbury, and how they can help with research into these magical South American birds, please contact me at antpittanest@gmail.com.

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