Cinnamon-Throated Hermit 

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Phaethornis nattereri

The Cinnamon-Throated Hermit is a species in the hummingbird family, Trochilidae. There is quite some confusion about the taxonomic status of birds called Maranhao Hermit.

It is sometimes treated as a subspecies of the Cinnamon-Throated Hermit, but at present most follow the analysis by Hinkelmann where it merely is considered the male plumage of P. nattereri.

But as it seems,the Maranhao Hermit only occurs in the northern part of the range of P. nattereri, and as the two have different voices they seem to warrant recognition as distinct species P. maranhaoensis.

It is pending of confirmation by molecular work. When treated as a separate species, Maranhao Hermit is endemic to the Brazilian states of Piauí, Maranhão, Tocantins, Pará, Mato Grosso and Goiás, where it breeds during November–April.

It is a small hermit, measuring 4 inches long.

Underside is essentially tawny, while crown, upper back and wings are dusky-greenish. Uppertail coverts are tipped reddish-chestnut, central tail elongated and tipped white while outer rectrices are tipped buff. Side of head with a black mask surrounded by two pale stripes.

Males are darker on throat with shorter central tail projection than female.

Feeds by trap-lining where it visits flowering plants but also eats some insects.

Dry to semi-humid forest, savanna and woodland at below 500 m asl.

Eastern Bolivia and adjacent south-western Brazil as well as in north-eastern Brazil (Maranhão to Ceará).

However, some sources indicate that these two populations are connected or at least have been connected in the recent past.


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