Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Velvety black-tyrant

Knipolegus nigerrimus

Photo by Dario Sanches (Wikipedia)

Common name:
velvety black-tyrant (en); maria-preta-de-garganta-vermelha (pt); ada noir (fr); viudita aterciopelada (es); kurzschopf-dunkeltyrann (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Tyrannidae

This species is endemic to Brazil, being found in the eastern and south-eastern parts of the country in the states of Pernambuco and Bahia, and from Minas Gerais south to Rio Grande do Sul.

These birds are 18 cm long and weigh 25-35 g.

The velvety black-tyrant is found tropical dry grasslands, dry forests, rocky areas and scrublands. They are present at altitudes of 700-2.700 m.

They feed on various fruits and insects.

Velvety black-tyrants breed in October-January. The nest is a cup made of roots and moss, with no lining other then a few feathers. The nest is placed over a rock or in a rocky crevice, 2-10 m above the ground. The female lays 3 white eggs with a few brown spots, which she incubates alone while the male stands guard near the nest. The chicks are fed by both parents. There is no information regarding the length of the incubation and fledging periods.

IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a large breeding range and is described as uncommon. This population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

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