Black Nunbird (Monasa atra)

Black Nunbird

[order] Galbuliformes | [family] Bucconidae | [latin] Monasa atra | [UK] Black Nunbird | [FR] Barbacou noir | [DE] Mohrentrappist | [ES] Monja Negra | [IT] Monaca nera | [NL] Zwarte Trappist


Monotypic species

Physical charateristics

It is an overall dull black with a slender and slightly decurved coral-red bill. With white to grey edges on the wing coverts. Legs are black. Sexes are alike.

Listen to the sound of Black Nunbird

[audio: Nunbird.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 25 cm size max.: 29 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
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The Black Nunbird is distributed in the Amazon Basin north of the Amazon and east of the rio Negro and into the Guianas.


Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist lowland forests. Prefers understorey to canopy of humid forest always near water.


Nest is a hole in the ground, probably 2 nests a year, no further data.

Feeding habits

Mostly insects like spiders, caterpillars and flies. Also lizards. sallies and hovers for prey caught sometimes on the wing but mostly eaten from foliage. Sometimes found to perch below groups of caciques to watch for falling prey.


This species has a large range, with an estimated global extent of occurrence of 1,700,000 km2. The global population size has not been quantified, but it is believed to be large as the species is described as ‘frequent’ in at least parts of its range (Stotz et al. 1996). Global population trends have not been quantified, but the species is not believed to approach the thresholds for the population decline criterion of the IUCN Red List (i.e., declining more than 30% in ten years or three generations). For these reasons, the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Black Nunbird status Least Concern


Sedentary throughout range.

Distribution map

Black Nunbird range map


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