Violet Sabrewing

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Image:Violet Sabrewing.JPG

Common Name: Violet Sabrewing
Scientific Name: Campylopterus hemileucurus

Size: 5.9 inches (15 cm)

Habitat: Central America; native to southern Mexico and Central America as far south as Costa Rica and western Panama. It is a species of the understory and edges of mountain forests, especially near streams.

Status: Least concern. Global Population: 50,000 - 499,999 Mature individuals.

Diet: Flower nectar, taken mainly from undergrowth flowers with Heliconias and bananas as favorites; also some insects.

Breeding: The adult male is deep violet, with a dark green back and wing coverts. The shafts of the male’s outer primary flight feathers are thickened and flattened to give the distinctive feature which gives the sabrewings their English and scientific names. The three outer pairs of feathers of the otherwise black tail are white; this gives rise to the scientific species name, hemileucurus translating as "half-white tail".

The female Violet Sabrewing lays its two white eggs in a relatively large cup nest on a low horizontal branch, usually over a stream.

Cool Facts: It is the largest hummingbird found outside of South America and the largest sabrewing. The call of the Violet Sabrewing is a sharp twitter, and the song of the male, given at leks of up to ten males, is a high-pitched piercing cheep tsew cheep tik-tik tsew.  

Found in Songbird ReMix Hummingbirds of South America

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