Cocoi Heron (Ardea cocoi)

Usually a very wary bird, and very hard to get close to. In Pantanal many birds allow you to get quite close, but this particular bird is something out of the ordinary. People from Fazenda San Fransico have been able to “tame” it – meaning it has slowly accepted hand-outs from humans, so it will follow your boat waiting for fish to be thrown into the river.

It will sit and wait until the boat has passed, then take to the wings and land further down the river and wait, then repeat this until we hopefully throw a fresh fish into the water.

As I don’t speak Portuguese, and nobody at Fazenda San Fransico speak a single word of English I didn’t know this beforehand, but after observing this bird for some time I noticed this peculiar behaviour. Then a freshly caught fish was thrown into the water. Lo and behold – the heron jumped to the fish like an overgrown kingfisher!

Cocoi Heron (Ardea cocoi)

It sounds like this:

Last updated on 8 December 2020