Purple Honeycreepers

 

Purple HoneycreeperThe Purple Honeycreeper, Cyanerpes caeruleus, is a small bird in the tanager family. It is found in the tropical New World from Colombia and Venezuela south to Brazil, and on Trinidad. A few, possibly introduced birds have been recorded on Tobago.

This is a forest canopy species, but also occurs in cocoa and citrus plantations. The female Purple Honeycreeper builds a small cup nest in a tree, and incubates the clutch of two brown-blotched white eggs.

The Purple Honeycreeper is 11.5cm long, weighs 12g and has a long black decurved bill. The male is purple with black wings, tail and belly, and bright yellow legs. Females and immatures have green upperparts, and green-streaked yellowish-buff underparts. The throat is cinnamon, and there is a blue moustachial stripe.

The Trinidadian race C. c. longirostris has a longer bill than the mainland forms. The call of Purple Honeycreeper is a thin high-pitched zree.

The Purple Honeycreeper is often found in small groups. It feeds on nectar, berries and insects, mainly in the canopy. It responds readily to the call of the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl.

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Purple Honeycreeper


 

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