Photo by Sarah Hadley
Species of the day –– Three-wattled Bellbird (Procnias tricarunculatus)
This was another exciting species we saw at Las Tablas, but we have seen it at one of our sampling sites in the past. The three long, wormlike ‘wattles’ hanging near its bill and its relatively bizarre behavior make it quite remarkable. The males perch in the canopy open their bills wide (It looks like their whole head opens up!) and then make a loud BENK call. They look really funny while they do this since there appears to be so much effort involved and they open so wide. The inside of their mouth (called a ‘gape’) is black and looks rather cavernous. We saw one male come and perch on the same branch as another one and then make the call directly into its face! It must have been really loud. The females were around inspecting them while they were calling.