Small Animals

Moonwalking Bird


Pay attention gentlemen and put on your dancing shoes! This is one flashy way to grab a ladies attention. This moonwalking bird is called a red-capped manakin, and he knows how to put on one heck of a show. After watching this song and dance, I really don’t see how any female bird could not be impressed.

The red-capped manakin is a small bird located in Central and South America, dancing deep in the forests of Costa Rica, Belize, Ecuador, Mexico and Guatemala. The males are much easier to spot with their vibrant red colored heads and deep black colored bodies. The females are bit more plain-jane brown and greenish, lacking the flair her male counterpart has.

Not only does the male red-capped manakin have a flashy style, but he’s also got some moves. The dance you are seeing here is his elaborate mating dance that he uses to show the ladies what he’s got. Not bad I say. His super fast foot work is truly amazing to see, but what’s even more fascinating is that the human eye is not even able to see the entire dance because his feet move that fast. In order to see all of the moves you would have to play the video back in slow motion.


Not only does this bird dance for the ladies, but he also adds a stunning song as well. Along with the fancy foot work is a series of rhythmic buzzes and clicks. These sounds were once thought to be made vocally, but slowed down video has shown that he is actually producing the sounds by vibrating his wing tips. His wings are so fast, they move quicker than a humming bird!

I love how in the animal world it’s the males that get all dressed up for the females, and really work for their attention. It’s a nice change of pace that should really be practiced in the human world.


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Wendy Aburto

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