where is the quetzal bird found

Conservation status edit

While the eared and resplendent quetzals are classified as Near Threatened, none of the many quetzal species are in danger in the wild right now. [7] The breeding behavior of Pharomachrus mocinno is correlated with the long-term existence of these forests, such as the few that remain in highland Guatemala. The species is dependent on standing dead and mature trees for breeding holes, which are only formed in primary cloud forests. [8] The IUCN does not list the remaining as threatened, and they are all common in the area. [3][4] The Chicabnab Reserve in Alta Verapaz and the Baja Verapaz portion of the Sierra de las Minas have some of the densest populations. [9] However, it should be remembered that even though quetzals usually live in cloud forests, one major threat to their survival is that they are becoming increasingly fragmented into smaller and smaller areas. [10] Another major threat to these animals is poaching. Since their feathers are still valued as historical artifacts, poachers trade them for goods from foreign tourists and museum collectors in addition to using them in rituals and medicines. Their natural habitat is being destroyed by deforestation, forcing them to move to other places. [6] During the summer, when precipitation is known to increase, resplendent quetzals are known to relocate in lower elevated areas; their movement patterns are most likely connected to an abundance of ripe Lauraceae fruits. [11].

Etymology edit

The Nahuatl word quetz = “stand up” refers to an upright plume of feathers. The name quetzal comes from quetzalli [keˈt̡salːi], which is translated as “large brilliant tail feather” in the American Audubon Dictionary or “tail coverts of the quetzal” in the Merriam-Websters Collegiate Dictionary. The word entered English through Spanish. The Aztec deity Quetzalcoatl is linked to the quetzal, which is a prominent figure in Mesoamerican mythology.

The quetzal, which is Guatemala’s national bird and the name of the country’s currency, was originally only used to refer to the long-tailed, resplendent quetzal found in the Petén region of northern Guatemala. Although it still frequently refers to that particular bird, it now also includes all species belonging to the genera Pharomachrus and Euptilotis.

Pharomachrus derives from the Ancient Greek words φάρος pharos, which means “mantle,” and μακρός makros, which means “long,” and refers to the coverts of the wing and tail of the magnificent quetzal (the second h is not explained).

The quetzal is also known in Peru as the pilco.[12][13]

A Gorgeous Bird That Needs Attention

The Resplendent Quetzal is listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as Near Threatened. The U.S. North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI) also includes the Resplendent Quetzal on its Watch List as a species of high conservation concern.

These days, habitat loss from deforestation, forest fragmentation, and agricultural clearing is the largest threat to this magnificent bird. It is occasionally caught for the pet trade and hunted for food.

where is the quetzal bird found

Help support ABCs conservation mission!

The El Jaguar Reserve in Nicaragua is home to the resplendent quetzal and provides important winter habitat for migratory species like the Wood Thrush and the Golden-winged Warbler. El Jaguar is near the larger Bosawas Biosphere Reserve, where ABC is assisting farmers in implementing silviculture practices, which support the growth of bird-friendly crops like cacao and help keep trees in place throughout agricultural areas, in collaboration with the Wildlife Conservation Society and local conservationists.

Relatively little is known about many of the rarest bird species in the Western Hemisphere. Enroll in ABC’s Bird of the Week email series, which often features these intriguing birds, to learn more about these birds and the threats they face.

More than 100 bird reserves have been established and expanded by American Bird Conservancy and our partners in Latin America and the Caribbean, protecting upward of 1 1 million acres of vital habitat. Together, weve planted more than 6. 8 million trees, helping to restore degraded and damaged habitat. Make a donation today to support our ongoing efforts to save endangered birds.


How rare is the quetzal bird?

Coming across one is rare. The Resplendent Quetzal is an endangered species. Only a few specimens are left in Mexico and Central America. However, there is a large population in Costa Rica thanks to forest protection efforts.

Is the quetzal only in Guatemala?

Region and Range. The national bird of Guatemala, the Resplendent Quetzal is also found from southern Mexico to western Panama.

Where do most quetzals live?

The Resplendent Quetzal lives in cloud forests from southern Mexico to Panama, anywhere between about 4 to 7,000 feet elevation in these really moist, cloud-laden, very biologically rich forests.

Where are quetzals found in Mexico?

The resplendent quetzal can be found from southern Mexico (southernmost Oaxaca and Chiapas) to western Panama (Chiriquí).