Crax sp. ‘Mituporanga’

Mituporanga (Crax sp.)

The Mituporanga is known only from a very old painting (see below), drawn by Eckhout Hoflössnitz sometimes between 1653 and 1659, which in fact might just depict a Bare-faced Curassow (Crax fasciolata Spix) or indeed a completely distinct species that is now lost. This painting is included in a book that depicts some birds from the former Dutch colony of Dutch Brazil, an area that today is covered mainly by the federative units of Alagoas, Bahia, Ceará, Maranhão, Paraíba, Pernambuco, Piauí, Rio Grande do Norte and Sergipe. [1]

Ornithologists have not recorded a species of Crax in the Northern Mata Atlântica. Thus, the plate and other paintings from the same time, and oral testimonies from old hunters are unambiguous evidence for either the historic disappearance of a disjunct population of the similar-looking bare- faced curassow (Crax fasciolata) or an undescribed species.” [2]



[1] Dante Martins Teixeira: Os quadros de aves tropicais do Castelo de Hoflössnitz na Saxônia e Albert Eckhout (ca. 1610–1666), artista do Brasil Holandês. Revista do Instituto de Estudos Brasileiros 49: 67-90. 2009
[2] Alexander C. Lees; Stuart L. Pimm: Species, extinct before we knew them? Current Biology 25(5): 177-180. 2015


Depiction by Eckhout Hoflössnitz, between 1653 and 1659

(public domain)


edited: 25.04.2021