Category Archives: Brazil

Rio Carnival Hotel and Last Minute Galapagos

Having problems finding somewhere to stay in Rio for the Carnival?  Rio hotel rooms at Carnival can be hard to find but we have a special offer on a great room for the nights of 20, 21 and 22 of Feb.

The Rio room is a double with its own terrace and fantastic views of Rio.

View from private terrace in Rio Hotel

View from private terrace

Colorful and comfortable room in Rio for Carnival

Experience the color of Rio at Carnival time

Contact us for details

Last Minute Offer for Galapagos Cruise

Fabulous 4 Day Cruise aboard the Luxury Class M/V Galaxy

Dates: Jan 21-24 – US$1845 incl flights from Guayaquil / Quito and transfers

Or 5 Day Cruise

Dates: Jan 24-28 – US1995 incl flights from Guayaquil / Quito and transfers.

Contact us for details of this and other Last Minute Galapagos deals.

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Blue Parrot in Movie Rio- What is the real Blu?

Rio The Movie

Rio The Movie

From the makers of Ica Age The Movie comes new release ‘Rio’.  This fun packed family animation features a rare blue macaw parrot called Blu.  He thinks he is the last parrot of his breed, so when he hears that there is one surviving female, he heads down to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil to hook up with the feisty Jewel.    The movie features Ann Hathaway as Jewel and Jesse Eisenberg as Blu.  Itwas premiered in Rio on March 25.  Blu is based on a real blue Brazilian parrot, The Spix’s Macaw.

Visit the home of Jewel in Brazil

What kind of parrot is Blu?

Spix's Macaw (Blu)

Spix's Macaw (Blu)

‘Blu’ is based on Spix’s Macaw; an almost extinct blue macaw parrot from Brazil.  Like Blu and Jewel, the real Spix’s Macaws are bright blue with a slightly lighter blue on their head and under parts.  The underside of the wings and tail are black.  Adults have black beak and feet but young Spix’s Macaws often have a white stripe down the center.  These Brazilian parrots are 55-57 cm long and live for 20-30 years in the wild.  When mating they make a noise like “whichaka” by creating a low rumble in the abdomen bringing the sound up to a high pitched end of the vocal cords. These bright and noisy birds are unfortunately easy to spot by smugglers.

The Loneliest Bird in the World

The story of the last Spix’s parrot is a sad and poignant story.  In the 1980s, naturalists thought the Macaw had disappeared. Then, in 1985, 5 birds were found in Bahia, Brazil.  Unfortunately, by 1990, four had either died or been caught by trappers.  This left only one 10-year-old male living along in the semi-arid Caatinga area.  For 10 years, conservationists and naturalists observed this lonely bird, keeping close tabs on its movements in order to record how this almost extinct bird lived. In 2000 the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Natural Renewable Resources (IBAMA) sadly announced that the last Spix’s Macaw had disappeared.  After two months of searching,  the Institute concluded that the last Little Blue Macaw had probably died.

Why did Spix’s Parrot become extinct?

Caatinga Lanscape

Caatinga Landscape

Spix’s Macaw comes from just one area of Brazil: the dry Caatinga area of north Bahia state, Brazil.  It is there that the Caraibiera riparian woodland, and favourite nesting place of the birds,  grows along the river banks.    When much of the land was cleared for cattle raising,  the birds’ natural habitat was greatly reduced.  Poaching was probably what wiped out the Spinx’s Macaw in the wild, though.  Despite being highly illegal, poachers would capture these beautiful birds to sell overseas as pets for as much as $40, 000.

Is this the end of the story for Spix’s Macaw?

Spix's Macaw

Hopefully the future for the Spix's Macaw

The future for Blu’s breed is happily, not so bleak.  Conservation efforts are focused on buying farms in the Caatinga area and allowing the land to revert to its natural state; providing a habitat for Spix’s Macaw and other endangered birds.

The biggest focus  is on an international breeding program.  There are currently 85 parrots in captivity inlcuing 4 in Sao Paolo Zoo and 56 at the Al-Wabra Wildlife Preservation (AWWP), Quatar.   Thanks to the last lonely Spix’s Macaw, breeders have lots of information on how the bird behaved in the wild and the hope is that in the future, the Little Blue Macaw will again fly freely in the Carabibeira ribarian woodlands of Bahia.

Bahia, Brazil

Spix’s Macaws come from one of the most beautiful and fascinating parts of South America; Bahia,Brazil.   Bahia’s main city, Salvador is a vibrant city with a historical center, beautiful beaches and a lively tradition of street music and dance.    There are crystal clear waters in the diving and snorkeling center of Parque Nacional  Marinho de Abrolhos and the stunning interior in Parque Nacional da Chapada Diamantina is a trekkers paradise.

 

Let Into Latin America show you the real South America