Guianan Cock-of-the-rock


Guianan Cock-of-the-rock



The Guianan Cock-of-the-rock (Rupicola rupicola) is the smaller of the two cocks-of-the-rock. The male averages 30 cm (or 12 in) in length and weight between 200-220 grams (7-7½ oz).


The orange-plumaged male has a striking half-moon crest; an orange-tipped black tail; black, orange and white wings; and silky-orange filaments of the inner *remiges (*bird's flight feathers that are attached to the rear portion of the wing bones). Additionally, its bill, legs and skin are also orange.

Guianan Cock-of-the-rock


The less conspicuous female is dark brownish-grey overall. She has a yellow-tipped black bill and a smaller crest than the male.


Distribution and Habitat:Guianan Cock-of-the-rock, one male and one female - photos by Candy McManiman

They can be found in the mountainous regions of Guyana, East Colombia, South Venezuela, Suriname, French Guiana and Northern Amazonian Brazil. They prefer the humid forest near rocky outcrops.

They are fairly common in its large range.



Their main diet consists of fruit, insects, as well as small vertebrates, such as frogs and lizards


Breeding / Nesting:

The smallest of two cock-of-the-rocks, the male is polygamous and displays in communal *lek to attract females. (*A lek is a gathering of males for the purposes of competitive mating display.) Males are polygamous, and once the mating has been completed, they don't participate in the incubation duties or the raising of the young. Instead, the males focus on practicing the above-described elaborate display rituals that effectively show off their bright plumage.

After the females have selected their mates and mating has completed, the females build nests under a rocky overhang. The nests are mud plastered to cave entrances or rocky outcrops in forest ravines.

A hen typically lays one to two white eggs, which she incubates alone for about 28 days. Once the young hatch she raises them without the help of the male.

Guianan Cock-of-the-rock

Species Research by Sibylle Johnson


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