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Hoatzin nest and chicks

Opisthocomus hoazin


The Hoatzin is a primitive clumsy bird of the Amazon region. They have two stomachs and digest plant matter via fermentation like a cow. The young are equipped with claws on the wings which they use to move through the branches near the nest. Good swimmers, the nestlings will drop into the water to escape nest predators and then climb back into the nest is the spotting of the chicks before the parent bird arrived


next to a lagoon in the amazon basin - Yarina lodge at edge of Yasuni


The nest was spotted first, but no hatchlings seen due to the lighting. Only once I started looking closer at the photos did I see the young birds. One of the reasons I do my bird watching with a long lensed bridge camera rather than binocs. This was an Oat tour for anyone interested, I'll give details via private message or email

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KarenSaxton 6 years ago

Thank you, Joshua. I'm kind of surprised I didn't tip the canoe over with my excitement. Good thing I was in the bow of the boat too

JoshuaGSmith 6 years ago


KarenSaxton 6 years ago

I searched project noah, that's for sure. The funny thing(from my way of looking at it) is that this wasn't a deep Amazon tour, we were in the drilling zone and on the lodge property.... Pretty much anyone who goes to this lodge goes to this lagoon

Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson 6 years ago

Karen, thanks for the heads-up on this one. Good shot! Very few people, I imagine can say the have viewed a Hoatzin nest.

KarenSaxton 6 years ago

Thank you - This is the one with two chicks visible with the parent bird

Wonderful !

KarenSaxton 6 years ago

and I just realized I have another set of pics with both chicks. Will post later.

KarenSaxton 6 years ago

I must say, it was a pretty amazing experience. Especially when I realized there were, actually chicks in the nest(that I had been taking pictures of for several minutes)

Love this!

Spotted by

El Dorado, Provincia de Orellana, Ecuador

Spotted on Dec 20, 2014
Submitted on Feb 8, 2015

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