Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. I don’t think I would even go close to that little guy!  The first bird that was discovered to be poisonous is the hooded pitohui. Though New Guinea natives have long known that these stunning orange and black songbirds (above) are indeed quite poisonous, the scientific community didn't catch on until relatively recently as explained in this video: The Hooded Pitohui actually contains venom. I will be very surprised if anyone thought it would be one of our flying, feathered friends. It seems that insects are always causing problems in this world, eh? The hooded pitohui is brightly coloured, with a brick red belly and a jet-black head. Researchers were studying these little song birds back in 1989 and noticed that after being scratched by the pitohui they would feel numbness and irritation. It is similar to the Monarch Butterfly that feeds on the toxic Milkweed plant in the larvae form. There are several species of pitohui, with the most poisonous one being the “Hooded Pitohui.” Feeding just a few milligrams of its skin to a mouse will kill it in a few minutes. The bill and legs are black, and the irises are either reddish brown, dark brown or black. Related Read: 5+ Malaysia Facts: Fun Trivia On the People, Culture, History & More. A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in … For the most part these birds will cause numbness and tingling, sneezing and other minor symptoms when touched. Hooded pitohuis were the first birds that were found to be poisonous. This bird has poison on its skin and feathers. Perhaps it tastes like chicken! Nestled in New Guinea, Hooded Pitohui is the only bird that has venom in its plumage and body. Local hunters always try to avoid killing these birds. any one of 7 species of Australasian flycatchers of genus Pitohui; first known venomous bird is hooded pitohui of New Guinea; brilliant orange and black feathers and skin contain poison homobatrachotoxin, same poison secreted by poison dart frogs of S. America; venom affects nerves of victim; how bird develops or acquires poison is not known. The adult has a black upperwing, head, chin, throat and upper breast and a black tail. Amazing Bird Fun Facts. The hooded pitohui is a forest fowl and will be discovered over a lot of New Guinea. At least three species of pitohui have a strong poison in their skin and feathers, the Hooded and Variable Pitohui being the deadliest of the three. I find it fascinating that not only are they immune to it but they are able to use this beetles’ chemical as a defence mechanism. Found only in the dense rain forests of western … That’s right! As well, I don’t blame you for not eating that bird. The hooded pitohui is a bird native to the New Guinea island. The hooded pitohui is 22 to 23 cm (8.7–9.1 in) long and weighs 65–76 g (2.3–2.7 oz). ), 800 coral species, 600 fish species, 3,000 orchid species, and even 8 species of tree-kangaroos! I am wondering if I have ever seen you in New Guinea? Click here for instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your browser. Just a query..How come the poison toxin from the choresine beetle does not harm such pitohui birds?Does that mean they are immune to it? As they turn into adults they carry this poison with them and use it as a defence mechanism. Birds are commonly associated with tranquility and freedom. From New Guinea's poisonous hooded pitohui to the spine-snapping beak of the African shoebill, hope you never cross paths with these scary birds. They are members of the family Corvidae (as are crows and ravens) and they are passerines, or songbirds. It is, in fact, the only known genus of poisonous bird in the world. In fact, researchers injected some of this neurotoxin into a mouse and it died instantly. Both sexes look alike. It explains how each one collects or activates its toxins such as the Hooded Pitohui, Pitohui dichrous. This chemical is actually the most powerful natural toxin known to man. They are brightly coloured, omnivorous birds. I can’t imagine eating song birds – poisonous or not! Hooded pitohuis are fairly common and can be found in the rainforests and jungles of New Guinea. Required fields are marked *, Enter your email address if you want to learn more about animals, 5 Interesting Facts About Hooded Pitohuis. It is the first poisonous bird to be officially documented in scientific literature. Fact 5 The world’s only known poisonous bird, the Hooded Pitohui (Pitohui dichrous) is native to Papua New Guinea. We will get to that in a second. Found in New Guinea, this bird is included among the passerine family. 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