Surucua Trogon (Trogon surrucura)

Surucua Trogon

[order] TROGONIFORMES | [family] Trogonidae | [latin] Trogon surrucura | [authority] Vieillot, 1817 | [UK] Surucua Trogon | [FR] Trogon surucua | [DE] Surucuatrogon | [ES] Surucua Comun (Arg), Trogon Surucua | [NL] Surucua-trogon


Monotypic species


The Neotropical Trogoninae, containing four genera, Trogon, Priotelus, Pharomachrus and Eupilotis. The two Caribbean species of Priotelus were formerly different ones (Temnotrogon on Hispaniola), and are extremely ancient. The two quetzal genera, Pharomachrus and Eupilotis are possibly derived from the final and most numerous genus of trogons in the Neotropics, Trogon. A 2008 study of the genetics of Trogon suggested the genus originated in Central America and radiated into South America after the formation of the Isthmus of Panama (as part of the Great American Interchange), thus making trogons relatively recent arrivals in South America. Within the genus Trogon, a division of species that coincides with female plumage type is well supported. Females with brown breasts and heads characterize one clade (including T. rufus), whereas females in the other clade (including T. comptus) have gray breasts and heads. Females of T. rufus and T. mexicanus both have brown heads. Male plumage does not appear to be informative at this level; species with red or yellow underparts are interspersed in both clades. They have large eyes, stout hooked bills, short wings, and long, squared-off, strongly graduated tails; black and white tail-feather markings form distinctive patterns on the underside. Males have richly colored metallic plumage, metallic on the upperparts.[1] Although many have brightly coloured bare eye-rings, they lack the colorful patches of bare facial skin in their African counterparts, Apaloderma.[2] Females and young are duller and sometimes hard to identify in the field

Physical charateristics

The male Surucua Trogon is beautifully colored bird with a royal blue crown, neck and breast; black cheeks and throat; a coppery green back shading to turquoise green on the tail; and a pinkish red belly. Females are dull gray above with distinct narrow white bars on the wing panels and black undertail coverts.

Listen to the sound of Surucua Trogon

[audio: Trogon.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

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South America : Southeast. The Surucua Trogon is distributed in east-central and south-east Brazil and into adjacent areas of Paraguay and Argentina


It is found in the mid-storey of forest and woodland


Nest in termite hill or higher up a dead tree or cactus.

Feeding habits

Surucua Trogons plucka insects from branches in flight as well as by sallying to catch flying insects in mid-air.

Video Surucua Trogon


copyright: Josep del Hoyo


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Surucua Trogon status Least Concern


Presumed sedentary with some seasonal movements in the North range.

Distribution map

Surucua Trogon distribution range map

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