Friday, 3 October 2014

Lance-tailed manakin

Chiroxiphia lanceolata

Photo by Nick Athanas (Internet Bird Collection)

Common name:
lance-tailed manakin (en); tangará-lanceolado (pt); manakin lancéolé (fr); saltarín lanceolado (es); lanzettschwanzpipra (de)

Taxonomy:
Order Passeriformes
Family Pipridae

Range:
This species is found from south-western Costa Rica, through Panama and northern Colombia and into northern Venezuela as far east as the Gulf of Paria.

Size:
These birds are 13-13,5 cm long, including the elongated tail fathers and weigh 14-23 g.

Habitat:
The lance-tailed manakin is mostly found in dry and moist tropical forests with thick undergrowth, also using second growths and dense scrublands. They are present from sea level up to an altitude of 1.700 m.

Diet:
They feed on a wide range of small fruits, including those of Rubiaceae, Solanaceae, Araliaciae, Verbenaceae, Gesneriaciae, Melastomataceae, Malvaceae, Flacourtiaceae and several others. Occasionally, they also take insects. Food items are taken in flight, using both sally and hover tactics.

Breeding:
Lance-tailed manakins breed in March-September. The males display in leks to attract females, having no further part in the breeding process after mating. Females build a small cup nest made of woven plant fibres, leaves and fungal rhizomorphs, which is attached to a twig using spider webs and saliva. It is placed in a scrub, about 1 m above the ground. The female lays 1-2 beige or brownish-white eggs with dark brown markings, which she incubates alone for about 18 days. The chicks are raised by the mother alone and fledge about 16 days after hatching.

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

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