Cock of the Rock

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About cock of the rock

The cock of the rocks (in Quechua: tunki) or simply cock of the rocks (Rupicola peruvianus), is a species of paseriformi bird of the Cotingidae family, one of the two belonging to the genus Rupicola. It is native to the Andean – Amazonian region of northwestern and western South America. Its closest relative is the cock of the rock Guiana (R. rupicola) and is notable for the incredible beauty of its plumage.

Distribution and habitat

Andean forest of the Manu National Park, Podocarp, in Ecuador, It is distributed by the Andean buttresses from western Venezuela through Colombia, Ecuador and Peru to central western Bolivia. This species is considered locally not uncommon in its natural habitat, the high and humid mist forests of the Amazon, where it prefers ravines and ravines (also known as yungas). For these reasons, rock roosters can be considered endangered, despite their current classification as a minor concern on the Red List of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Description

Head of a male, with its prominent crest. They have a marked sexual dimorphism. The male has a very colorful plumage, a combination of orange and black. The females, in contrast, have an austere and dull plumage, dominated by shades of brown. The short beak, legs and fingers are strong. Both sexes have a crest of disc-shaped feathers permanently deployed (much larger in males). Despite the bright colors in males, they are usually difficult to observe when they are not in their deployment fields, Feeding The cock of the rocks feeds on a large number of wild fruits, which grow in large quantities in the mountain forest of the eastern Andean slopes. Rock cocks are undoubtedly unique, but many of the most conspicuous birds in tropical forests are also eminently frugivorous. This is a consequence of the fact that between 50% and 80% of the trees in the Amazon rainforest produce fruits as a propagation mechanism.

Reproduction

Reproduction begins in October with the formation of leks and ends with the incubation in the months of November to February, the female is responsible only for the care of the egg and the breeding, the incubation lasts between 40 to 42 days, but the young remain with the female for the first three months Its name, says Humboldt, is associated with rocks because it inhabits deep-rooted wet ravines in which they frequent steep ravines or cliffs; there between hollows they raise their chicks.
The singular demonstrations of the males, dancing and singing in selected places of the forest known with the name lek (place of courtship) constitute an effective form of selection among the males of the species. The male who dances best in the eyes of the female, and the one who returns punctually every day to the dance session avoiding being prey to predators, will be chosen to give his genes to the new generations of rock roosters.