Planalto Hermit 

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Phaethornis Pretrei

Planalto Hermit

The Planalto Hermit is a species of bird in the family Trochilidae. At one time, it was suggested to belong to a monotypic genus Anisoterus but this treatment was quickly rejected. It is closely related to the Sooty-Capped Hermit (P. augusti) and may form a superspecies with it. It has no recognized subspecies, but several that have been proposed have been shown to be based on aberrant specimens or individual variation.

BILL: Male – strongly decurved bill. Female – less strongly decurved.

SIZE: 14 to 16.5 cm (5.5 to 6.5 in) long.

WEIGHT: Males weigh 4.5 to 7 g (0.16 to 0.25 oz) and females 3 to 5 g (0.11 to 0.18 oz). 

COLOR: Olive green, red black, cinnamon red, black and white.

The Planalto Hermit medium-sized hermit, mostly olive green upperparts with reddish uppertail coverts. The next-to-inner tail feathers are longer than the others and all have white tips. Underparts are cinnamon red. Face has a black "mask" with a white supercilium and gular stripe. Sexes are similar but females have shorter wings and a less strongly decurved bill.

Probably a "trap-line" feeder like other hermit hummingbirds, visiting a circuit of flowering plants for nectar. It also consumes small arthropods.

SONG: Variable, "often a sequence of evenly-spaced, alternating, single and double notes, e.g. 'ti-tsi...tsi...tsi...tsi...ti-tsi...tsi..tsi', but also sometimes triple-noted phrases such as 'chu-tsi-tsi...chu-tsi-tsi...chu-tsi-tsi...'."

Inhabits a variety of landscapes including non-forested but "vegetation-rich" areas, dry forest, secondary forest, and gallery forest. It is also found in human-modified environments as long as trees and herbs are present. In elevation it ranges from 400 to 2,100 m (1,300 to 6,900 ft).

Wide swath of Brazil south of the Amazon rainforest, eastern Boliva, northern Argentina and much of Paraguay. The South American Classification Committee (SACC) of the American Ornithological Society places the species in those four countries and also notes many records in Peru.

Nesting season is not fully defined but appears to span from August to April.

NEST: A long cone-shaped cup made of plant material and spider web. In contrast to most other Phaethornis hermits, it hangs the nest from a vertical branch, in a cavity of a rock face, and also in or under human structures like culverts, bridges, and abandoned buildings.

CLUTCH SIZE: Two eggs.

Planalto Hermit Infographics


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