West mexican chachalaca

(Ortalis poliocephala)

The West Mexican chachalaca is a species of bird in the Cracidae family. It is found only in Mexico, more specifically in Pacific-slope (and adjacent interior) thorn forest from Jalisco to Oaxaca.

Conservation status

Least concern

Scientific classification

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Galliformes
Family: Cracidae
Genus: Ortalis
Specie: Ortalis poliocephala


It is a bird of 625 to 675 mm, is similar in appearance to the chachalaca of the Gulf (Ortalis vetula), but of greater size and with the most conspicuous crest; Even so, it may be difficult to identify in the field between the two species, whose distribution overlaps in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec.


Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests and subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests.

Zoológico de Vallarta A. C.

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