Toucans are known for their oversized, colorful bills. In fact, a toucan’s bill is so large that it seems out of proportion to its body. Due to its weird appearance, a Tumblr thread started to point out some interesting toucan facts, mostly about its mysterious beak. As it turned out, there are many people who also think that these birds look weird. By talking about the bird’s skeletal anatomy and the way it sleeps, people began to realize that these large-billed birds are weirder than they thought.
Here’s how the viral thread started and transpired:
If you want to learn more toucan facts then we’ve got some interesting bits of trivia about these strange-looking birds. First, let’s try to understand why toucans have big beaks. Despite its enormous size, a toucan’s beak is actually very light. The beak’s surface is made of layers of keratin while the interior is a rigid foam made of bony fibers and drum-like membranes. Due to the existence of numerous air holes, the beak is mostly air but it is optimized for high strength with very little weight.
The beak of a toucan is serrated like a knife so it can tear its food apart. Lightweight yet strong, they use their beaks to forage for food, to defend themselves against predators and to attract mates. Bright orange in color, the beak can grow up to 8 inches long and accounts for almost half of its entire body length.
There are 42 different species of toucans which are distinguished by the size and color of their bills. The toco toucan is the largest of all toucans and this species lives mostly in central and eastern South America. Toco toucans can grow up to 25 inches tall. Due to their beautiful bright-colored bills, toco toucans are also popular as pets and are common attractions in zoos. Furthermore, toco toucan is the best-known species in the toucan family because they can easily adapt to man and other habitats.
A Very Young Toucan Bird
Most toucans primarily eat fruit but they sometimes prey on insects and lizards when the opportunity arises. Although they are mostly frugivores, they can adapt to their environment and change their diet especially when fruits are scarce. Their favorite fruits are bananas, figs, oranges, guavas and peppers while their preferred insects are caterpillars and termites. They also eat frogs, small birds and will occasionally eat the eggs of other birds.
Toucans can live between 20 and 26 years in the wild. But in captivity, their lifespan decreases to about 18 years. As a pet, toucans can make wonderful companions. They are friendly, playful and won’t mind getting cuddles from their owners. They also like to play with toys and they are smart enough to learn tricks. Moreover, they are not as loud as parrots can be. So, if you’re planning to get a pet toucan, you’re absolutely making a wise choice.
Here’s what people have to say about these awesome toucan facts