List of birds of Paraguay

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The bare-throated bellbird is the national bird of Paraguay.

This is a list of the bird species recorded in Paraguay. The avifauna of Paraguay has 695 species, of which one is endemic, two have been introduced by humans, 39 are rare or accidental, and five are extirpated or extinct. An additional 27 species are hypothetical (see below).

This list's taxonomic treatment (designation and sequence of orders, families, and species) and nomenclature (common and scientific names) follow the conventions of The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World, 2016 edition.[1] The family accounts at the beginning of each heading reflect this taxonomy, as do the species counts found in each family account. Introduced and accidental species are included in the total counts for Paraguay. Except as an entry is cited otherwise, the list of species is that of the South American Classification Committee (SACC) of the American Ornithologists' Union.[2] The taxonomy used by the SACC differs from "Clements", and significant differences in names are noted.[3] Differences from "Clements" in the sequence of orders, families, and species within families are not noted.

The following tags have been used to highlight certain categories, but not all species fall into one of these categories. Those that do not are commonly occurring native species.

  • (A) Accidental - a species that rarely or accidentally occurs in Paraguay
  • (E) Endemic - a species endemic to Paraguay
  • (H) Hypothetical - a species recorded but with "no tangible evidence" according to the SACC
  • (I) Introduced - a species introduced to Paraguay as a consequence, direct or indirect, of human actions


Table of contents

See also        References        External links

Rheas[edit]

Order: Struthioniformes   Family: Rheidae

The rheas are large flightless birds native to South America. Their feet have three toes rather than four which allows them to run faster. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Tinamous[edit]

Order: Tinamiformes   Family: Tinamidae

The tinamous are one of the most ancient groups of bird. Although they look similar to other ground-dwelling birds like quail and grouse, they have no close relatives and are classified as a single family, Tinamidae, within their own order, the Tinamiformes. They are distantly related to the ratites (order Struthioniformes), that includes the rheas, emus and kiwis. Thirteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Screamers[edit]

Order: Anseriformes   Family: Anhimidae

The screamers are a small family of birds related to the ducks. They are large, bulky birds, with a small downy head, long legs and large feet which are only partially webbed. They have large spurs on their wings which are used in fights over mates and in territorial disputes. Two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Ducks, geese, and waterfowl[edit]

Order: Anseriformes   Family: Anatidae

Anatidae includes the ducks and most duck-like waterfowl, such as geese and swans. These birds are adapted to an aquatic existence with webbed feet, flattened bills, and feathers that are excellent at shedding water due to an oily coating. Twenty-two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Guans, chachalacas, and curassows[edit]

Order: Galliformes   Family: Cracidae

The Cracidae are large birds, similar in general appearance to turkeys. The guans and curassows live in trees, but the smaller chachalacas are found in more open scrubby habitats. They are generally dull-plumaged, but the curassows and some guans have colorful facial ornaments. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

New World quail[edit]

Order: Galliformes   Family: Odontophoridae

The New World quails are small, plump terrestrial birds only distantly related to the quails of the Old World, but named for their similar appearance and habits. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Grebes[edit]

Order: Podicipediformes   Family: Podicipedidae

Grebes are small to medium-large freshwater diving birds. They have lobed toes and are excellent swimmers and divers. However, they have their feet placed far back on the body, making them quite ungainly on land. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Flamingos[edit]

Order: Phoenicopteriformes   Family: Phoenicopteridae

Flamingos are gregarious wading birds, usually 3 to 5 feet (0.9 to 1.5 m) tall, found in both the Western and Eastern Hemispheres. Flamingos filter-feed on shellfish and algae. Their oddly shaped beaks are specially adapted to separate mud and silt from the food they consume and, uniquely, are used upside-down. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Storks[edit]

Order: Ciconiiformes   Family: Ciconiidae

Storks are large, long-legged, long-necked, wading birds with long, stout bills. Storks are mute, but bill-clattering is an important mode of communication at the nest. Their nests can be large and may be reused for many years. Many species are migratory. Three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Cormorants and shags[edit]

Order: Suliformes   Family: Phalacrocoracidae

Phalacrocoracidae is a family of medium to large coastal, fish-eating seabirds that includes cormorants and shags. Plumage colouration varies, with the majority having mainly dark plumage, some species being black-and-white and a few being colorful. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Anhingas[edit]

Order: Suliformes   Family: Anhingidae

Anhingas are often called "snake-birds" because of their long thin neck, which gives a snake-like appearance when they swim with their bodies submerged. The males have black and dark-brown plumage, an erectile crest on the nape, and a larger bill than the female. The females have much paler plumage especially on the neck and underparts. The darters have completely webbed feet and their legs are short and set far back on the body. Their plumage is somewhat permeable, like that of cormorants, and they spread their wings to dry after diving. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Herons, egrets, and bitterns[edit]

Order: Pelecaniformes   Family: Ardeidae

The family Ardeidae contains the bitterns, herons and egrets. Herons and egrets are medium to large wading birds with long necks and legs. Bitterns tend to be shorter necked and more wary. Members of Ardeidae fly with their necks retracted, unlike other long-necked birds such as storks, ibises and spoonbills. Fourteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Ibises and spoonbills[edit]

Order: Pelecaniformes   Family: Threskiornithidae

Threskiornithidae is a family of large terrestrial and wading birds which includes the ibises and spoonbills. They have long, broad wings with 11 primary and about 20 secondary feathers. They are strong fliers and despite their size and weight, very capable soarers. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

New World vultures[edit]

Order: Accipitriformes   Family: Cathartidae

The New World vultures are not closely related to Old World vultures, but superficially resemble them because of convergent evolution. Like the Old World vultures, they are scavengers. However, unlike Old World vultures, which find carcasses by sight, New World vultures have a good sense of smell with which they locate carrion. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Osprey[edit]

Order: Accipitriformes   Family: Pandionidae

The Pandionidae family contains only one species, the osprey. The osprey is a medium-large raptor which is a specialist fish-eater with a worldwide distribution.

Hawks, eagles, and kites[edit]

Order: Accipitriformes   Family: Accipitridae

Accipitriformes is an order of birds of prey, which includes hawks, eagles, kites, harriers (all Accipitridae), the osprey (Pandionidae), and New World vultures (Cathartidae). These birds have powerful hooked beaks for tearing flesh from their prey, strong legs, powerful talons, and keen eyesight. Thirty-five species of Accipitridae have been recorded in Paraguay.

Rails, gallinules, and coots[edit]

Order: Gruiformes   Family: Rallidae

Rallidae is a large family of small to medium-sized birds which includes the rails, crakes, coots and gallinules. Typically they inhabit dense vegetation in damp environments near lakes, swamps, or rivers. In general they are shy and secretive birds, making them difficult to observe. Most species have strong legs and long toes which are well adapted to soft uneven surfaces. They tend to have short, rounded wings and to be weak fliers. Twenty-three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Finfoots[edit]

Order: Gruiformes   Family: Heliornithidae

Heliornithidae is a small family of tropical birds with webbed lobes on their feet similar to those of grebes and coots. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Limpkin[edit]

Order: Gruiformes   Family: Aramidae

The limpkin resembles a large rail. It has drab-brown plumage and a greyer head and neck.

Stilts and avocets[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Recurvirostridae

Recurvirostridae is a family of large wading birds, which includes the avocets and stilts. The avocets have long legs and long up-curved bills. The stilts have extremely long legs and long, thin, straight bills. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Plovers and lapwings[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Charadriidae

The family Charadriidae includes the plovers, dotterels and lapwings. They are small to medium-sized birds with compact bodies, short, thick necks, and long, usually pointed, wings. They are found in open country worldwide, mostly in habitats near water. Seven species which have been recorded in Paraguay.

Painted-snipes[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Rostratulidae

Painted-snipes are short-legged, long-billed birds similar in shape to the true snipes, but more brightly colored. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Jacanas[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Jacanidae

The jacanas are a group of tropical waders in the family Jacanidae. They are found throughout the tropics. They are identifiable by their huge feet and claws which enable them to walk on floating vegetation in the shallow lakes that are their preferred habitat. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Sandpipers and allies[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Scolopacidae

Scolopacidae is a large diverse family of small to medium-sized shorebirds including the sandpipers, curlews, godwits, shanks, tattlers, woodcocks, snipes, dowitchers and phalaropes. The majority of these species eat small invertebrates picked out of the mud or soil. Variation in length of legs and bills enables multiple species to feed in the same habitat, particularly on the coast, without direct competition for food. Twenty-three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Gulls, terns, and skimmers[edit]

Order: Charadriiformes   Family: Laridae

Laridae is a family of medium to large seabirds and includes gulls, kittiwakes, terns, and skimmers. Gulls are typically grey or white, often with black markings on the head or wings. They have longish bills and webbed feet. Terns are a group of generally medium to large seabirds typically with grey or white plumage, often with black markings on the head. Most terns hunt fish by diving but some pick insects off the surface of fresh water. Terns are generally long-lived birds, with several species known to live in excess of 30 years. Skimmers are a small family of tropical tern-like birds. They have an elongated lower mandible which they use to feed by flying low over the water surface and skimming the water for small fish. Thirteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Pigeons and doves[edit]

Order: Columbiformes   Family: Columbidae

Pigeons and doves are stout-bodied birds with short necks and short slender bills with a fleshy cere. Sixteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Cuckoos[edit]

Order: Cuculiformes   Family: Cuculidae

The family Cuculidae includes cuckoos, roadrunners, and anis. These birds are of variable size with slender bodies, long tails, and strong legs. Thirteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Barn-owls[edit]

Order: Strigiformes   Family: Tytonidae

Barn-owls are medium to large owls with large heads and characteristic heart-shaped faces. They have long strong legs with powerful talons. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Owls[edit]

Order: Strigiformes   Family: Strigidae

The typical owls are small to large solitary nocturnal birds of prey. They have large forward-facing eyes and ears, a hawk-like beak, and a conspicuous circle of feathers around each eye called a facial disk. Sixteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Nightjars and allies[edit]

Order: Caprimulgiformes   Family: Caprimulgidae

Nightjars are medium-sized nocturnal birds that usually nest on the ground. They have long wings, short legs, and very short bills. Most have small feet, of little use for walking, and long pointed wings. Their soft plumage is camouflaged to resemble bark or leaves. Sixteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Potoos[edit]

Order: Caprimulgiformes   Family: Nyctibiidae

(The SACC places potoos in their own order, Nyctibiiformes)[7]

The potoos (sometimes called poor-me-ones) are large near passerine birds related to the nightjars and frogmouths. They are nocturnal insectivores which lack the bristles around the mouth found in the true nightjars. There are seven species, of which three have been recorded in Paraguay.

Swifts[edit]

Order: Caprimulgiformes   Family: Apodidae

(The SACC places swifts in their own order, Apodiformes)[8]

Swifts are small birds which spend the majority of their lives flying. These birds have very short legs and never settle voluntarily on the ground, perching instead only on vertical surfaces. Many swifts have long swept-back wings which resemble a crescent or boomerang. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Hummingbirds[edit]

Order: Caprimulgiformes   Family: Trochilidae

(The SACC places hummingbirds in their own order, Trochiliformes)[9]

Hummingbirds are small birds capable of hovering in mid-air due to the rapid flapping of their wings. They are the only birds that can fly backwards. Twenty species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Trogons[edit]

Order: Trogoniformes   Family: Trogonidae

The family Trogonidae includes trogons and quetzals. Found in tropical woodlands worldwide, they feed on insects and fruit, and their broad bills and weak legs reflect their diet and arboreal habits. Although their flight is fast, they are reluctant to fly any distance. Trogons have soft, often colorful, feathers with distinctive male and female plumage. Three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Motmots[edit]

Order: Coraciiformes   Family: Momotidae

The motmots have colorful plumage and long, graduated tails which they display by waggling back and forth. In most of the species, the barbs near the ends of the two longest (central) tail feathers are weak and fall off, leaving a length of bare shaft and creating a racket-shaped tail. Two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Kingfishers[edit]

Order: Coraciiformes   Family: Alcedinidae

Kingfishers are medium-sized birds with large heads, long, pointed bills, short legs, and stubby tails. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Puffbirds[edit]

Order: Galbuliformes   Family: Bucconidae

The puffbirds are related to the jacamars and have the same range, but lack the iridescent colors of that family. They are mainly brown, rufous, or grey, with large heads and flattened bills with hooked tips. The loose abundant plumage and short tails makes them look stout and puffy, giving rise to the English common name of the family. Four species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Jacamars[edit]

Order: Galbuliformes   Family: Galbulidae

The jacamars are near passerine birds from tropical South America, with a range that extends up to Mexico. They feed on insects caught on the wing, and are glossy, elegant birds with long bills and tails. In appearance and behavior they resemble the Old World bee-eaters, although they are more closely related to puffbirds. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Toucans[edit]

Order: Piciformes   Family: Ramphastidae

Toucans are near passerine birds from the Neotropics. They are brightly marked and have enormous colorful bills which in some species amount to half their body length. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Woodpeckers[edit]

Order: Piciformes   Family: Picidae

Woodpeckers are small to medium-sized birds with chisel-like beaks, short legs, stiff tails, and long tongues used for capturing insects. Some species have feet with two toes pointing forward and two backward, while several species have only three toes. Many woodpeckers have the habit of tapping noisily on tree trunks with their beaks. Twenty-one species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Seriemas[edit]

Order: Cariamiformes   Family: Cariamidae

The seriemas are terrestrial birds which run rather than fly (though they are able to fly for short distances). They have long legs, necks and tails, but only short wings, reflecting their way of life. They are brownish birds with short bills and erectile crests, found on fairly-dry open grasslands. Both of the family's two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Falcons and caracaras[edit]

Order: Falconiformes   Family: Falconidae

Falconidae is a family of diurnal birds of prey. They differ from hawks, eagles and kites in that they kill with their beaks instead of their talons. Twelve species have been recorded in Paraguay.

New World and African parrots[edit]

Order: Psittaciformes   Family: Psittacidae

Parrots are small to large birds with a characteristic curved beak. Their upper mandibles have slight mobility in the joint with the skull and they have a generally erect stance. All parrots are zygodactyl, having the four toes on each foot placed two at the front and two to the back. Twenty-four species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Typical antbirds[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Thamnophilidae

The antbirds are a large family of small passerine birds of subtropical and tropical Central and South America. They are forest birds which tend to feed on insects at or near the ground. A sizable minority of them specialize in following columns of army ants to eat small invertebrates that leave their hiding places to flee from the ants. Many species lack bright color; brown, black and white being the dominant tones. Twenty-two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Crescentchests[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Melanopareiidae

Gnateaters[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Conopophagidae

The gnateaters are round, short-tailed and long-legged birds, which are closely related to the antbirds. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

Antpittas[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Grallariidae

Antpittas resemble the true pittas with strong, longish legs, very short tails and stout bills. Two specis have been recorded in Paraguay

Tapaculos[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Rhinocryptidae

The tapaculos are small suboscine passeriform birds with numerous species in South and Central America. They are terrestrial species that fly only poorly on their short wings. They have strong legs, well-suited to their habitat of grassland or forest undergrowth. The tail is cocked and pointed towards the head.

Antthrushes[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Formicariidae

Ovenbirds and woodcreepers[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Furnariidae

Ovenbirds comprise a large family of small sub-oscine passerine bird species found in Central and South America. They are a diverse group of insectivores which gets its name from the elaborate "oven-like" clay nests built by some species, although others build stick nests or nest in tunnels or clefts in rock. The woodcreepers are brownish birds which maintain an upright vertical posture, supported by their stiff tail vanes. They feed mainly on insects taken from tree trunks. Fifty-eight species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Tyrant flycatchers[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Tyrannidae

Tyrant flycatchers are passerine birds which occur throughout North and South America. They superficially resemble the Old World flycatchers, but are more robust and have stronger bills. They do not have the sophisticated vocal capabilities of the songbirds. Most, but not all, have plain coloring. As the name implies, most are insectivorous. One hundred one species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Sharpbill[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Oxyuncidae

Cotingas[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Cotingidae

The cotingas are birds of forests or forest edges in tropical South America. Comparatively little is known about this diverse group, although all have broad bills with hooked tips, rounded wings and strong legs. The males of many of the species are brightly colored, or decorated with plumes or wattles. Four species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Manakins[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Pipridae

The manakins are a family of subtropical and tropical mainland Central and South America, and Trinidad and Tobago. They are compact forest birds, the males typically being brightly colored, although the females of most species are duller and usually green-plumaged. Manakins feed on small fruits, berries and insects. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Tityras and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Tityridae

Vireos[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Vireonidae

The vireos are a group of small to medium-sized passerine birds restricted to the New World. They are typically greenish in color and resemble wood warblers apart from their heavier bills. Three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Crows, jays, and magpies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Corvidae

The family Corvidae includes crows, ravens, jays, choughs, magpies, treepies, nutcrackers, and ground jays. Corvids are above average in size among the Passeriformes, and some of the larger species show high levels of intelligence. Three species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Swallows[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Hirundinidae

The family Hirundinidae is adapted to aerial feeding. They have a slender streamlined body, long pointed wings and a short bill with a wide gape. The feet are adapted to perching rather than walking, and the front toes are partially joined at the base. Fourteen species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Wrens[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Troglodytidae

The wrens are mainly small and inconspicuous except for their loud songs. These birds have short wings and thin down-turned bills. Several species often hold their tails upright. All are insectivorous. Five species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Gnatcatchers[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Polioptilidae

These dainty birds resemble Old World warblers in their build and habits, moving restlessly through the foliage seeking insects. The gnatcatchers and gnatwrens are mainly soft bluish grey in color and have the typical insectivore's long sharp bill. They are birds of fairly open woodland or scrub which nest in bushes or trees. Two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Donacobius[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Donacobiidae

Thrushes and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Turdidae

The thrushes are a group of passerine birds that occur mainly in the Old World. They are plump, soft plumaged, small to medium-sized insectivores or sometimes omnivores, often feeding on the ground. Many have attractive songs. Seven species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Mockingbirds and thrashers[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Mimidae

The mimids are a family of passerine birds that includes thrashers, mockingbirds, tremblers, and the New World catbirds. These birds are notable for their vocalizations, especially their ability to mimic a wide variety of birds and other sounds heard outdoors. Their coloring tends towards dull-greys and browns. Two species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Wagtails and pipits[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Motacillidae

Motacillidae is a family of small passerine birds with medium to long tails. They include the wagtails, longclaws and pipits. They are slender, ground feeding insectivores of open country. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

New World warblers[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Parulidae

The New World warblers are a group of small, often colorful, passerine birds restricted to the New World. Most are arboreal, but some are terrestrial. Most members of this family are insectivores. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Tanagers and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Thraupidae

The tanagers are a large group of small to medium-sized passerine birds restricted to the New World, mainly in the tropics. Many species are brightly colored. They are seed eaters, but their preference tends towards fruit and nectar. Most have short, rounded wings. Seventy species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Buntings and New World sparrows[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Emberizidae

The emberizids are a large family of passerine birds. They are seed-eating birds with distinctively shaped bills. In Europe, most species are called buntings. In North America, most of the species in this family are known as sparrows, but these birds are not closely related to the Old World sparrows which are in the family Passeridae. Many emberizid species have distinctive head patterns. Four species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Cardinals and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Cardinalidae

The cardinals are a family of robust, seed-eating birds with strong bills. They are typically associated with open woodland. The sexes usually have distinct plumages. Six species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Troupials and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Icteridae

The icterids are a group of small to medium-sized, often colorful, passerine birds restricted to the New World and include the grackles, New World blackbirds, and New World orioles. Most species have black as the predominant plumage color, often enlivened by yellow, orange or red. Twenty species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Finches, euphonias, and allies[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Fringillidae

Finches are seed-eating passerine birds, that are small to moderately large and have a strong beak, usually conical and in some species very large. All have twelve tail feathers and nine primaries. These birds have a bouncing flight with alternating bouts of flapping and gliding on closed wings, and most sing well. Seven species have been recorded in Paraguay.

Old World sparrows[edit]

Order: Passeriformes   Family: Passeridae

Sparrows are small passerine birds. In general, sparrows tend to be small, plump, brown or grey birds with short tails and short powerful beaks. Sparrows are seed eaters, but they also consume small insects. One species has been recorded in Paraguay.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2016. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2016. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/ retrieved 11 August 2016
  2. ^ Del Castillo, Hugo, and Rob Clay, Arne Lesterhuis, and Paul Smith . 2016. Species lists of birds for South American countries and territories: Paraguay. Version of 4 August 2016. http://www.museum.lsu.edu/~Remsen/SACCCountryLists.htm
  3. ^ http://www.museum.lsu.edu/~Remsen/SACCBaseline.htm A Classification of the Bird Species of South America, hereafter SACC List. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  4. ^ SACC List
  5. ^ Clay, Rob (2016) A first for South America - by a whisker. Neotropical Birding 19:56-58.
  6. ^ SACC List
  7. ^ SACC List
  8. ^ SACC List
  9. ^ SACC List
  10. ^ SACC List
  11. ^ SACC List

External links[edit]