A mysterious Ibis of jungle rivers in South America: Green Ibis

A mysterCayenneibisious jungle dweller leisurely stalks out of the shadows of the gallery forest toward the middle of the river. A squat bird with a curved, yellowish-greenish bill, short green legs and dark bronze-green plumage emerges. It is a Green Ibis (Mesembrinibis cayennensis).


It pokes, striding slowly, with its long beak in mud, dirt and shallow water. The Green Ibis feeds on aquatic invertebrates.


The Green Ibis is a strikingly dark colored ibis of the wetlands and swampy forests of Central and South America. It is a dark glossy green overall, but can appear blackish in poor light.  The only species of its genus, the Green Ibis is stockier and shorter-legged than representatives of the similar plegadis ibises. The Green Ibis is native to the lowlands of Honduras south to northern Argentina.

In poor light, the Green Ibis may resemble the Glossy Ibis (Plegadis falcinellus), although the latter is more slender, has longer legs, and appears bronze or purple in good light.


Interestingly, with 7 species of ibis occurring sympatrically in Venezuela, scientists documented remarkable intermingling among these seven species at one site. At the site, the Green Ibis accounted for only 5% of the local ibis population during the dry season. The Green Ibis generally dispersed so that they tended to forage alone at the edge of the bank, never venturing deeper than two inches into the water.  Unlike other species, they consistently foraged at all times of the day. A good place to start learning about Amazonian and Central South American birds such as the Green Ibis is the Rio Pixaim in the northern Pantanal, and in particular Fazenda Tereza. This is located directly on the banks of the bird-rich Rio Pixaim. The turnoff to the lodge is at kilometer 63 on the Transpantaneira, just past the Mato Grosso Hotel. This accommodation is still signposted as Fazenda Tereza. Recently, however, it is called Southwild Pantanal Lodge.


To cope with the growing demand for top shots of the rarer species of the Palearctic Bird-Lens is keen to enrich the range of pictures of birds you can find in the western palearctic and beyond.  Trips to remote places like this one to capture images not only of rare birds of western palearctic were very successful. The nice image of the blog is only a first impression, what you will find in the gallery in the “Picture Shop” very soon. Just give bird-lens.com a message, if bird-lens.com could serve you with an image needed before the new pictures are online.

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