NFSS | National Finch & Softbill Society 501(3)(C)
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Groove Bill

(Aulachorynchus sulcatus)

The Groove Bill Toucanet (Aulachorynchus sulcatus) is one of the mountain toucanets that until the summer of 1999, had not recently been in the U.S. There are three subspecies, which collectively inhabit the forests of the coastal ranges of Venezuela and Northeastern Colombia. The subspecies pictured here (A. sulcatus calorhynchus) is the only one of the three with yellow on the beak, which is replaced with red in the nominate form, A.s.sulcatus. It is found in the Merida Andes of western Venezuela west into the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta of northern Colombia.

Aviculture: Outdoor flights should be at least 4′ x 8′ x 4′ for toucanets (Even larger flights should be used if possible!).

Toucanets may be a bit pugnacious with other species in their family and with smaller birds, and therefore should not be housed with different birds in small enclosures or cages.

Toucanets are frugivorous birds, whose primary diet is fruit. In the wild they consume fruits from as many as 100 species of plants and trees. They also consume a variety of insects for protein, especially during their nesting cycle.

They MUST be fed FRESH fruit every day! The fruit diet should also be supplemented with a low iron protein source (such as Mazuri Low Iron Softbill diet by Purina Mills).

They are not as difficult to breed as often thought and must be housed alone in pairs, preferably following the size enclosures mentioned above under housing. While they will breed in boxes, with a concave bottom, they are far more likely to breed if they are provided with a “natural” nest, constructed from a palm tree log. Logs allow these birds to continually dig their nest chamber deeper, which helps them cement the pair bond.

All Ramphastids lay pure white, elliptical shaped eggs, usually 3-4 per clutch. Incubation for all species lasts 16 days, and young fledge the nest at 40-42 days.

First captive breeding: has never been bred in captivity