Our main attention goes out to Cracidae: chachalaca’s, guans and curassows. Birds that inhabits the jungles and mountains in Middle- and South-America. They extend from Central Mexico to the south of Uruguay and northern Argentina.

Chacalaca’s are the smallest members of the family, their colour is duller than those of the guans and they live mainly in the drier parts of the tropics and spent a bit more time on the ground than guans do. Guans are medium-sized birds that are primarily arboreal. There are fifteen species of guans. Curassows are larger than other Cracidae and more terrestrial, spending half of the day on the ground. There are 14 species of curassows.

Curassows are hunted relentlessly; together with habitat loss makes some of them birds on the verge of extinction.

I keep the curassows in aviaries with an outside part of at least 12m² and because of climate conditions in my area they all have an inside part of 4m². The inside part is kept above freezing temperature to avoid birds from getting frost-injuries. Sand is used to cover the floor inside to keep it dry and make it easy to clean. Food is a standard pheasant pellet with a snack of different fruits, vegetables and T16 (Versele). Most perches are inside so I know they sleep under te protection of the roof. Because the guans are more aboreal, i always put more perches in their aviaries, inside and outside.

Cracids are easy to keep, and breeding them is possible but will never be a mass-production because of their small clutches of mostly 2-3 eggs. They don’t make loud noises, eat an easy diet (pheasant pellets and some fruits) and are very hardy as they don’t suffer diseases often. This makes them interesting birds to keep and to observe. Pictures here are from our own collection and from visits at El Nido (Mexico) and Pava Aliblanca (Peru).

Blue-Throated Piping Guan

Chaco chachalaca (Ortalis canicollis)

Little chachalaca (Ortalis motmot)

Ortalis motmot

Horned guan (Oreophasis derbianus)

In this movie you see Kara Sun, who is also passionate by Cracids, taking a small tour with some of our birds.

Movie credits @ Kara Sun

Besides the Cracids, we keep  a variety of other birds as well. Most are still in the collection, some we had to let go to make room for others.

Red-legged Seriema
Black-necked Grebe
Grey-winged Trumpeter
Nest Hamerkop
Red-necked Grebe
Grey-headed Gull

Another movie of Kara Sun is inside the aviary of the pair of Red-legged Seriema. You can visit her youtube page to see a lot of her bird movies and others. And if you are into Pheasants or other Galliformes you can watch her video's on this channel.

Demoiselle Crane
Flaimngo 1
Young cranes
Flamingo chick
Treron vernans
Treron delalandii
Red-Winged Starling
Allen's Gallinule
Green Cardinal
Saint Helena Waxbill
Rose-Breasted Grosbeak