Andean Cock-of-the-Rock

ANIMAL:
Andean Cock-of-the-Rock Rupicola peruvianus

Type of Animal:
Songbird

Habitat:
Cloud forest, montane forest, ravines, forest streams, subtropical/tropical forest, humid rocky forest, rocky gorges bordering streams/rivers, forest clearings, areas near streams, thick humid woodland, found at altitudes of 1,500-8,900 ft

Location(s):
Andes areas of Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, & Bolivia

Appearance:
Males have scarlet to orange plumage w/ disk-like crest, black tail/wings, pale grayish scapulars, yellowish bill. Females much drabber than males w/ more faded orange & brownish tail/wings, overall darker/chestnut-brown, bill dark/grayish w/ small yellow tip, females crest less prominent

Food/Diet:
Fruit, berries, insects, amphibians, reptiles, small mammals, birds

Status in Wild:
Stable

Conservation:
Breeding in zoos, aquariums, & wildlife centers

Lifestyle:
Flocks consist of 2-15 males & 2-25 females. Males gather in groups called leks in breeding periods, in which they engage in competitive displays w/ each other as well as courtship displays to attract females. Female does all parenting. Females nest in close proximity.

Additional Info:

Called:
Male: Cock
Female: Hen
Young: Chick
Group: Flock

Weight:
Male: 9.38 oz
Female: 7.51-7.97 oz
Young: 3.5 oz

Gestation:
1 month 

Life Span:
7 years

Height:
1 ft, same for both sexes

Body Length:
1 ft, same for both sexes

Tail Length:
1.5 in, same for both sexes

Main predators are raptors, snakes, & mammalian carnivores.
 
Females build nests from mud & vegetation binding it w/ own saliva.
 
In leks, males show off bright plumage & do elaborate dance. Also perform mock confrontational displays, featuring bowing, wing-flapping, head-bobbing, bill-snapping, & squeak/squawk/grunt calls. Redouble display efforts when females assess performance. Males w/ better performances get more females.
 
Females usually lay 2 eggs.
 
Play important role in seed dispersal due to diet.
 
Rather shy in wild.
 
Smaller birds sometimes use abandoned cock-of-the-rock nests.
 
Difficult to breed in captivity due to breeding habits.
 
When disturbed or in flight, they’ll emit loud querulous “uankk.”
 
Sometimes follow army ant swarms, eating ants as well as animals escaping from them.
 
Sexually mature at a year old.

Fun Fact(s):
Occasionally kept as pets in native range.
 
Genus name Rupicola derives from Latin words meaning rock inhabiting.
 
Despite coloration, heard more often than seen.
 
Gets name from tendency to build nests in rocky areas.
 
Often regarded as Peru’s national bird.
 
Known as tunki in Quechua.
Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, male, Brookfield Zoo, me

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