HATCH YEAR: 2004
FUN FACTS ABOUT MURDOCH
- Murdoch loves interacting with guests that visit the Nature Center, where he often greets newcomers with a cheery “Hello!” and also bids them farewell with a “bye- bye.” Guests may also hear him say “Hi Murdoch, “pretty bird,” “pretty Murdoch” and a bunch of other random phrases.
- One of his favorite pastimes is to play “Peek-a-Boo,” where he bobs his head down and back up again with guests and naturalists alike.
- As an educational ambassador for his species, Murdoch also travels to overnight programs where he may collect donations by taking them with his beak and placing them in a donation box. He particularly enjoys those programs as he likes to people watch between donation sessions.
- You can also find him collecting donations at our Amazing Animal Encounters during the summer.
- Ara militaris.
- From Mexico as far south as Argentina, but its range is very fragmented and in South America consists of a series of scattered populations along the length of the Andes. There are former range areas in western Mexico where it is now extinct.
- In South America, these macaws prefer wooded mountain foothills with humid forest and canyons, while in Mexico, they use a slightly wider range of habitat types, including semi-arid woodland and pine-oak forest. They do not seem to be restricted to pristine habitat, with reports from Peru and Mexico that they will use shade-grown coffee plantations and other agricultural land.
- Seeds, fruits, nuts, berries and other treetop vegetation; beaks well adapted for cracking hard nuts with ease; known to visit clay riverbanks and feed on the clay deposits which are believed to detoxify the poisons found in their diets; possibly ingested for the dietary salt which their normal diet lacks.
- A very noisy bird that lives in large flocks; leaves roosts in large flocks at dawn and head to feeding areas; nest in the tops of trees and in cliff-faces over 600 ft.; these birds are monogamous and remain together for life; female lays 1-2 eggs which only she will incubate for approximately 26 days.
- Mostly green in color with the head a slightly paler shade; has a red frontal patch, with a white bare facial area barred with narrow blacklines; flight feathers are blue; red tail bordered with blue; the large strong beak is grey-black; the iris is yellow; appears similar to and maybe easily confused with the larger Great Green Macaw.