Crimson Topaz


Crimson Topaz

The Crimson Topaz is the largest hummingbird of Brazil. It is the second in size after the Giant Hummingbird.

It has 4 subspecies which differ in plumage colors, with more or less crimson on upperparts, and black on the head.

They can reach a length of 8.3 – 9.1 inches in males (including bill about 1.96 inches and tail about 4.72 inches), while females reach 5.1 – 5.5 inches. Both males and females weigh about 10 grams.

Males are notably larger and, with iridescent crimson plumage and sparkling green throat, more spectacular- looking than the female. Belly and breast are metallic orange-red. Wings are brown and are maroon in the lower part. The long tail coverts are golden green.

Females are smaller and different in plumage. They have dark green upperparts. On the underparts, throat is green with crimson edges. The rest of underparts are green with golden-green edges. Undertail coverts are glossy green. Tail feathers include bronze-green central rectrices, violet next pair of feathers, and chestnut outer rectrices.

Immature birds are similar to female. They have short, slightly curved beaks that allow them to feed from a variety of local plants.

Utters high-pitched chirps and whistles. Advertising calls are often short, and indicate the defense of feeding areas. Chase calls are series of rapid chattering used in territory defense.

Feeds mainly on nectar from flowers of different plants species. It also catches flying insects in the air.

Frequents the lowland rainforests up to 500 meters of elevation. It is often found in the canopy, in gallery-forest along rivers and creeks.

Found in Brazil, Colombia, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela.

Nest is cup-shaped, made with pale colored plant fibers, often of Bombax seeds (fastened with spider webs).

Its size is less than half the length of the female and appears relatively small compared to the bird. It is usually placed on small fork in branches or in vines, at about 3 - 8 meters above or near water.

The female lays 2 white eggs and incubates the eggs for about 14 - 23 days (but exact time is unknown).


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