Toucan facts: What You Didn’t Know About These Amazing Birds

Toucans bird

When most people think of toucans, they probably think of the big bird with the enormous beak featured in cereal commercials. But there’s more to these amazing birds than meets the eye. Here are some interesting facts about toucans that you may not know.

What do toucans eat, and where do they live?

Toucans are tropical birds native to Central and South America and inhabit lush rainforest habitats. Their striking beaks, which can measure up to 8 in (20 cm) in length, make them instantly recognizable and a favorite among birdwatchers. Regarding diet, toucans mainly feed on fruit and supplement with insects, frogs, and small lizards. They are also known to snack on eggs from other birds’ nests or chow down on still-living adult birds! To locate food sources quickly. Around half of their diet consists of ripe fruits that have already dropped from the surrounding trees due to their sweet aroma.

As toucans usually nest in tree cavities several meters above the forest floor, they must cling tightly with their long claws while reaching out to pick fruits off branches. This is quite a feat, considering how large and heavy their beaks can be! Fortunately for these birds, certain trees offer nourishment year-round, allowing toucans a consistent local food source not found in many other places.

How big are toucans, and how long do they live in the wild?

Toucans are beautiful songbirds that are native to Central and South America. They have colorful beaks and large eyes that give them an expressive look, and they can be found in tropical rainforests of these regions. Many people wonder about their size and lifespan. How big are toucans, and how long do they typically live?  To answer this question, it’s important to note that many species of toucans exist.

Generally speaking, the size of the bird is determined by its size in terms of length from head to tail. Smaller birds generally measure closer to around 8 inches, while larger species can reach up to 24 inches in size. In terms of lifespan, like other wild birds, they don’t live very long. In the wild, most toucans only survive between 7-14 years on average. Regardless of size and lifespan, toucans make captivating pets with beautiful colors and melodic calls.

What colors do toucans have, and why are their beaks so big compared to their body size?


Toucans are well known for their colorful features and striking beaks. The upper parts of a toucan’s body are generally black or dark brown, while the underside can range from yellow to red. As far as their unique beak goes, it is quite useful! Since they mainly feed on fruits and cannot use their feet to hold onto food, their large beaks give them more reach and make it easier to grip their food.

On top of that, the beak also helps them regulate their body temperature. It contains hollow air pockets, which help keep them cool in hot environments. Its size makes for an impressive sight that helps male toucans in courtship rituals.

What is the biggest species of toucan, and what is the smallest species of a toucan?


Toucans are birds found throughout the forests of Central and South America. They are known for their signature brightly colored bills, spanning up to one-third of the bird’s body length! The biggest species of the toucan is the Toco Toucan, which can reach up to 22 inches in length, making it the largest bird in its family. The smallest species of the toucan is much smaller.

The Aracari bird typically grows between 10 to 13 inches in length. Regardless of size, though, nearly every toucan sports a distinctive large bill and multicolored feathers that help make this bird so easily recognizable.

In addition to being eye-catching creatures, toucans also have an important role in helping disperse seeds throughout the forest by eating fruits and dispersing them before they are digested.

How many types of toucans are there worldwide, and what are some of their most distinguishing features?


It’s hard not to be taken in by toucans’ friendly, colorful features. Many different types of these beautiful birds can be found throughout the world. There are approximately forty species of toucan, each with unique physical characteristics and natural organization. Most of them have large and colorful bills. Some species have bills weighing up to 20% of their body weight! Besides having a hefty bill, different types of toucans may vary in size. Smaller species, like the Green Aracari, typically measure around 10 to 11 inches, while larger ones, such as the Toco Toucan, can reach up to 24 inches.

Depending on their variety, different species may also differ in colors and patterns, ranging from greenish blue to bright pink feathers. All these different traits show just how complex and diverse the different types of toucans are! Whether their lengthy multicolored bills or vibrant feathers, toucans are a great addition to any backyard environment. And will certainly enchant visitors with their brightly colored personalities.

Toucans are fascinating birds found in the rainforest and other tropical areas worldwide. These birds are easily recognizable with their brightly-colored feathers and large, distinctive beaks. There are many species of toucan, each with its unique features. Please check out our other blog posts to learn about toucans or other bird species. We have lots of information to share!

Julian Goldie - Owner of

Julian Goldie

I'm a bird enthusiast and creator of Chipper Birds, a blog sharing my experience caring for birds. I've traveled the world bird watching and I'm committed to helping others with bird care. Contact me at [email protected] for assistance.