|Orinoco Geese on the Tambopata River in Peru|
Larger than a Mallard yet smaller than a Canada Goose, the Orinoco Goose is one of the easiest species of birds to see when traveling along remote Amazonian Rivers because they tend to hang out on sandbars and open, rocky areas of rivers. Although this striking looking species of goose lives in the Amazon basin, it’s not really a forest bird. However, unlike most species of ducks and geese, it’s rarely seen floating in the water either!
|Orinico Goose in Los Llanos (flatlands), Venezuela (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
This waterfowl species is strikingly plumaged with a long, gray neck, chestnut body, and dark green wings. It also has long, bright pink legs and feet better suited for walking than swimming. Its handsome coloration actually helps this species blend into the rocky beaches it prefers, especially since it moves around very little.
A few interesting facts about the Orinoco Goose:
- Named after one of the longest rivers in South America: This bird is named after the Orinoco River, the most important waterway in northern South America. Large numbers of Orinoco Geese occur in the savannahs that occur near the river of the same name.
- Restricted to South America: The Orinoco Goose is only found in the Amazon basin, the Orinoco basin, and in the Pantanal wetlands of southern Brazil and Paraguay.
- Threatened by hunting: Despite its large range, this species has disappeared from many areas due to overhunting and has therefore become restricted to remote, protected places.
- Related to African species of geese: The closest relative of the Orinoco Goose is the similar Egyptian Goose of Africa.
- Take a boat ride to the Tambopata Research Center: This striking goose species is often seen along the section of the Tambopata River between the Malinowski checkpoint and the Tambopata Research Center. Orinoco Geese occur along this part of the river because it receives strict protection and has large areas of stony and grassy beaches preferred by this species.
- Watch the shore of the river: Despite their large size and striking plumage, Orinoco Geese can be overlooked if you don’t watch for them. They don’t move around much and can thus blend into the background. Fortunately, when you take a Peruvian jungle tour with Rainforest Expeditions, your guide will always be watching for, and help you see, Orinoco Geese and other interesting animals.