Puffbirds of Pipeline Road

The Puffbirds (Bucconidae) are a family of 35 bird species found exclusively in the Americas with eight species occurring in Panama.  Four of these species (pictured below) can regularly be spotted from Pipeline Road.  The name is derived from their ‘puffy’ plumage and short tails which gives them an overall short and stocky appearance.  Puffbirds sit and wait on exposed perches for long periods of time until an insect prey item passes by, often affording good views whilst birdwatching.  Puffbirds vocalise very infrequently, and nest in tunnels dug into dirt, dead wood or termite mounds.  These secretive habits mean that little is known about the behaviour and ecology of this family of neotropic birds.

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