<< Previous Next >>


Photo Information
Copyright: Peter van Zoest (PeterZ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2013-09-20
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D90, Sigma 135-400mm f/4.5-5.6 APO, Digital RAW
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1600 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2014-05-12 7:08
Viewed: 1223
Points: 28
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
After two and a half weeks of absence I continue my series about the Pantanal with this bird, the Limpkin.
This photo is taken from a little boat.

The Limpkin (also called carrao, courlan, and crying bird), Aramus guarauna, is a bird that looks like a large rail but is skeletally closer to cranes. It is the only extant species in the genus Aramus and the family Aramidae. It is found mostly in wetlands in warm parts of the Americas, from Florida to northern Argentina. It feeds on molluscs, with the diet dominated by apple snails of the genus Pomacea. Its name derives from its seeming limp when it walks.

Taxonomy and systematics
The Limpkin is placed in its own monotypic family, Aramidae, which is in turn placed within the crane and rail order Gruiformes. It had been suggested that the Limpkin was close to the ibis and spoonbill family Threskiornithidae, based upon shared bird lice. Recent DNA studies have confirmed a close relationship with particularly the cranes, with the Limpkin remaining as a family close to the cranes and the two being sister taxa to the trumpeters.

The Limpkin is a somewhat large bird, 64–73 cm long, with a wingspan of 101–107 cm. Body mass ranges from 900 to 1,300 g, averaging 1,080 g. The males are slightly larger than the females in size, but there is no difference in plumage. Its plumage is drab—dark brown with an olive luster above. The feathers of the head, neck, wing coverts, and much of the back and underparts (except the rear) are marked with white, making the body look streaked and the head and neck light gray. It has long, dark-gray legs and a long neck. Its bill is long, heavy, and downcurved, yellowish bill with a darker tip. The bill is slightly open near but not at the end to give it a tweezers-like action in removing snails from their shells, and in many individuals the tip curves slightly to the right, like the apple snails' shells. The white markings are slightly less conspicuous in first-year birds. Its wings are broad and rounded and its tail is short. It is often confused with the immature American White Ibis.
This bird is easier to hear than see. Its common vocalization is a loud wild wail or scream with some rattling quality, represented as "kwEEEeeer or klAAAar." This call is most often given at night and at dawn and dusk. It has been used for jungle sound effects in Tarzan films and for the hippogriff in the film Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Other calls include "wooden clicking", clucks, and in alarm, a "piercing bihk, bihk...".

Distribution and habitat
The Limpkin occurs from peninsular Florida (and formerly the Okefenokee Swamp in southern Georgia) and southern Mexico through the Caribbean and Central America to northern Argentina. In South America it occurs widely east of the Andes; west of them its range extends only to the Equator.
It inhabits freshwater marshes and swamps, often with tall reeds, as well as mangroves. In the Caribbean, it also inhabits dry brushland. In Mexico and northern Central America, it occurs at altitudes up to 1,500 m. In Florida the distribution of apple snails is the best predictor of where Limpkins can be found.
The Limpkin undertakes some localised migrations, although the extent of these are not fully understood. In some parts in the northern part of the range females (and a few males) will leave the breeding areas at the end of summer, returning at the end of winter. Birds may also migrate between Florida and Cuba. In Brazil birds breeding in some seasonal marshes will leave during the dry season and return again with the rains.

Source: A part of Wikipedia

oscarromulus, CeltickRanger, Hotelcalifornia, Silvio2006, ramthakur, Ishi, marius-secan has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

Detailed notes. Thanks.
Image: 10/10
Have never ever seen this species when I lived in Brazil.
Thanks for sharing.
Mario with kind regards from Canada.

Hello Peter

Excellent close-up photo of this large wader bird,
fine POV, DOF, and framing, excellent light,
great focus, sharpness, details, and contrast, TFS


Hello Mr.Peter,
"Crying Bird"-interesting species.Well presentation with excellent colour and details.Like its POV too.Precise and useful NOTE too.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice time,

Ciao Peter, lovely composition with beautiful bird in a fascinating ambientation, splendid light, excellent clarity and wonderful colors, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio

Bonsoir Peter,
Belle publication valorisant bien le sujet dans une belle lumière et sous une bonne profondeur de champ.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2014-05-12 15:03]

Hi Peter,welcome back,i hope that it's all right! And you're back with a new fantastic surprise from your trip,magnificent specie in a top quality capture,impossible to make better!Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano

Your absence for some time made me wonder if you too had deserted TN, Peter. Thank God, you are back!
Another gem of a bird picture from Brazil. You have an inexhaustible store of them, mercifully.
Thanks for sharing yet another.

  • Great 
  • Ishi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 298 W: 21 N: 1943] (13387)
  • [2014-05-13 8:55]

Welcome back to TN, Peter!

This is yet another beautiful souvenir of your most successful trip to Brazil. Also from the technical point of view it is outstanding.

All the best,


Hallo Peter
Mooie foto Super scherp en prachtige kleuren
Ik zit nog op corfu en heb weer wat foto's voor TN
Gr lou

Amazing playing of light here MF Peter! Perfect DOF excellent details.


  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2014-05-14 10:00]

Hallo Peter,
Beautiful capture of the Limpkin ..
Focus, POV, colors and composition very nice.
Best wishes,

Hello Peter,
What a interesting specie of bird. The colors and details are amazing.
Very nice image. Fantastic capture with outstanding contrast. The composition, the clarity and exposure are very good.
Thanks for sharing!

GREAT SHOT..........

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2014-05-15 18:56]

Hello Peter,
Your boat ride paid off with a wonderful image of this beautiful Limpkin. Your exposure is perfect and focus is super sharp. Every feather can be viewed in fine detail and the bird is displayed in an attractive relaxed pose. A real beauty!!

Calibration Check