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Oasis Hummingbird

From Opus

Male, Subspecies vesperPhoto by Stanley Jones Lima Region, Peru, January, 2017
Male, Subspecies vesper
Photo by Stanley Jones
Lima Region, Peru, January, 2017
Rhodopis vesper


[edit] Identification

Female, Subspecies vesperPhoto by Luis R Azapa Valley, Chile, December 2017
Female, Subspecies vesper
Photo by Luis R
Azapa Valley, Chile, December 2017

Length 12-13.5cm (4¾-5¼ in)
Long, decurved bill.

  • Bronze-green above
  • Whitish below
  • Shiny pinkish-violet throat
  • Reddish rump
  • Short tail is green in the center with longer, dark brown outer feathers.

Female: Duller overall, and lacks the violet throat of the male; Pale brown underparts, tail is shorter and uniform length, with white underside tips.

[edit] Distribution

There are two separate populations of Rhodopis vesper: the first occupies a 100-200km wide strip extending the length of Peru's coastline. The second is in a narrower strip along the dry coastline of Chile where registered almost to Santiago.

[edit] Taxonomy

[edit] Subspecies

Three subspecies are recognized:[1]

  • R.v. koepckeae - Northwest Peru
  • R.v. vesper (tertia) - Western Peru to extreme northern Chile
  • R.v. atacamensis - Northern Chile (Atacama area)

[edit] Habitat

This is a bird of extreme dry climates; the coastal areas of Peru and Chile often see no measurable rain for long periods of time. However, the Andes Mountain chain produces streams that cut to the coast, and this bird takes advantage of the vegetation along these oases, foraging in often dense thickets of thorny plants.

[edit] Behaviour

[edit] Diet

Typical of other hummingbirds, it seeks out nectar from the flowering shrubs, cacti and trees. They also hawk for flying insects.

[edit] Breeding

They use branches of fig, lemon and orange trees to suspend their cup-shaped nests.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2017. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2017, with updates to August 2017. Downloaded from
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved June 2017)

[edit] External Links


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