Gray-Chinned Hermit 

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Phaethornis griseogularis

The Gray-Chinned Hermit species of hummingbird in the family Trochilidae.

It has two distinctive and geographically separated subspecies.

  • P.g. griseogularis Gould, 1851 – W of Andes in Colombia; E Andes from Colombia S to N Peru (San Martín); S & SE Venezuela and adjacent N Brazil (on several isolated mountains).
  • P.g. zonura Gould, 1860 – N Peru (Marañón Valley in E Cajamarca and adjacent Amazonas).

It is a small hermit, about 4 inches in length.

It is mainly dull brownish green above with rusty tinged uppertail coverts. It has a well-defined black mask through the eye, bordered only above with whitish-buff stripe.

Throat is whitish. Underparts are tawny. Bill is long and slightly decurved, with a mostly yellow lower mandible. Central feathers of the tapered tail are long and white-tipped.

It is similar to the Black-Throated Hermit but is distinguished by having whitish throat and overall warmer coloration. It ranges above the range of Reddish Hermit. 

This is not a quiet species, where it will often sing and have audible wing noises.

They tend to sing the most in early mornings and afternoons - with males singing a 'warbling' tune described as a "tzz, weeh-weeh-tzee-dee" with their bills upright and open and wagging their tails.

Often forming leks, these males will distribute themselves in a way to make sure they can hear the other males, but not see them. They defend these territories that they keep.

They feed via traplining and have a diet consisting of arthropods and nectar.

Subtropical or tropical dry forest, subtropical or tropical moist montane forest, and heavily degraded former forest.

Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, and - marginally - far northern Brazil.


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