Red legged Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes cyaneus)

Red-legged Honeycreeper

[order] Passeriformes | [family] Thraupidae | [latin] Cyanerpes cyaneus | [UK] Red-legged Honeycreeper | [FR] Guit-guit sai | [DE] Turkisnaschvogel | [ES] Tucuso Monatnes | [IT] Cianerpe zamperosse | [NL] Blauwe Suikervogel


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Chlorophanes cyaneus
Cyanerpes cyaneus LA e Mexico to c Bolivia and e Brazil
Cyanerpes cyaneus brevipes
Cyanerpes cyaneus carneipes
Cyanerpes cyaneus cyaneus
Cyanerpes cyaneus dispar
Cyanerpes cyaneus eximius
Cyanerpes cyaneus gemmeus
Cyanerpes cyaneus gigas
Cyanerpes cyaneus holti
Cyanerpes cyaneus pacificus
Cyanerpes cyaneus tobagensis
Cyanerpes cyaneus violaceus

Physical charateristics

The male is bright blue with black mantle, wings, tail and lores and a bright turquoise crown. The legs are bright red while the bill is long and slender. The female is dull green above and pale yellow with greenish streaks below. Both sexes have bright yellow underwing coverts.

Listen to the sound of Red-legged Honeycreeper

[audio: Honeycreeper.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 12 cm size max.: 13 cm
incubation min.: 12 days incubation max.: 13 days
fledging min.: 14 days fledging max.: 15 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 3  


The Red-legged Honeycreeper is distributed from Mexico through Central America and into lowland Colombia and the Amazon and Orinoco Basins. There is a disjunct population in eastern Brazil.


They are found mainly in the canopy and mid-storey. It lives in groups of up to 15 or 20 birds along the edges of forests, in capoeiras, fields and clearings with scattered trees.


When building their nests, the Honeycreepers seem to stick to the mid-level of the forest canopy, which is where many insects live. The female Red-legged Honeycreeper builds a small cup nest in a tree, and incubates the clutch of two brown-blotched white eggs for 12-13 days, with a further 14 days to fledging.

Feeding habits

The Red-legged Honeycreeper is often found in small groups. It feeds on insects and some fruit and nectar. It responds readily to the (easily imitated) call of the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl.


This species has a large range, with an estimated global Extent of Occurrence of 8,100,000 km². The global population size has not been quantified, but it is believed to be large as the species is described as ‘common’ 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.
Red-legged Honeycreeper status Least Concern


Sedentary throughout range

Distribution map

Red-legged Honeycreeper range map


Title Ecological relationships between feather mites (Acari) and wild birds of
Emberizidae (Aves) in a fragment of Atlantic Forest in northeastern Brazil
Author(s): Rachel M. de Lyra-Neves Angela M. Isidro de Farias & Wallace R. Telino-Junior
Abstract: The objective of this study was to investigate fea..[more]..
Source: Revista Brasileira de Zoologia 20 (3): 481-485, 2003

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