Flag sylph

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Flag sylph


Class : Birds (aves)
Order : Sailor birds (Apodiformes)
Family : Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)
Genre : Flag sylph
Type : Flag sylph
Scientific name of the  genus
Gould , 1846
Scientific name of the  species
Ocreatus underwoodii
( Lesson , 1832)

The booted racket-tail ( Ocreatus underwoodii ) or green crown booted racket-tail is a bird art from the family of hummingbirds (Trochilidae). It is the only species of the monotypical genus of flag sylphs ( Ocreatus ) and lives in the Andes of Venezuela , Colombia , Ecuador , Peru and Bolivia .



The flag sylph has a green shimmering plumage that almost uniformly covers the entire body of the male, with the exception of the striking white trousers on the legs. The species shows a distinct sexual dimorphism . The underside of the females is cream-colored to whitish green, in the subspecies O. u. melanantherus white with some green spots on the sides of the chest. The front upper head of the females has a copper-colored tint, behind the eye they have a white spot.

The central tail feathers of the males are green, the rest blue-black. The outer pair is greatly elongated with a long, bare shaft and broadened like a flag at the tip. At O. u. peruanus , the widened ends of the long, outer control feathers are rather elongated, in O. u. annae rounded and often crossed over. In the female, the tail is dark green with a darker terminal band and deeply forked. The under tail-coverts of the females are usually yellow-brown.

Flag sylphs are small, slender hummingbirds. The males, including tail feathers, reach a body length of about 13 cm, the females about 8 cm. The weight is 3 g. The beak is straight and very short at 13 mm.

Habitat and way of life

The flag sylph lives in mountain forests and forest edges at altitudes from 850 m to 3100 m. Their flight is pendulous and is reminiscent of the flight of a bee. At first glance, you might think of it as a large insect. It ingests its food floating or occasionally holding onto the flower. They can be found individually in the undergrowth or in groups in the crowns of flowering trees. Among other things, she looks for trees of the genus Inga and Calliandra as well as other legumes , reddish plants and bromeliad plants for food .


Eight subspecies have been described, which differ in their coloration, the outer control feathers and their area of ​​distribution. O. u. addae , O. et al. annae and O. u. peruanus are sometimes viewed as one to three distinct species, O. u. ambiguus is a synonym for O. u. incommodus :

Etymology and history of research

René Primevère Lesson received a drawing of the hummingbird from Thomas Richard Underwood (1772-1836) on behalf of Charles Stokes (1783-1853) and described the species under the name Ornismya underwoodii . It was later assigned to the genus Ocreatus . This name is of Latin origin and means "wearing greaves". "Polystictus" is composed of the Greek words "polys ἕτερος " for "many" and "stiktos, stigmē στικτός, στιγμή " for "speckled, blotchy, blotchy". "Melanantherus" is a Greek word formation from "mélas μέλας " for "black" and "antherōn ανθερων " for "chin". "Peruanus" refers to the country of Peru. "Incommodus" is the Latin word for "uncomfortable, uncomfortable". "Discifer" is made up of the Latin words "discus" for "discus, disc" and "ferre" for "to carry". »Annae« is dedicated to Anna Branicka, the wife of Baron Xavier Branicki. "Addae" was given in honor of Adeline (Adda) Driver Wilson (née Stevens) (1819–1891), the wife of William Savory Wilson (-1870).


  • Steven Leon Hilty , John A. Gwynne, Guy Tudor : Birds of Venezuela . Princeton University Press, Princeton 2002, ISBN 978-0-691-09250-8 .
  • Steven Leon Hilty, William Leroy Brown : A guide to the birds of Colombia . Princeton University Press, Princeton 1986, ISBN 978-0-691-08372-8 ( books.google.de [accessed June 10, 2014]).
  • Thomas Scott Schulenberg, Douglas Forrester Stotz, Daniel Franklin Lane, John Patton O'Neill, Theodore Albert Parker III : Birds of Peru . Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey 2007, ISBN 978-0-7136-8673-9 .
  • Charles Gald Sibley , Burt Leavelle Monroe, Jr : Distribution and Taxonomy of Birds of the World . Yale University Press, Princeton, New Jersey 1991, ISBN 978-0-300-04969-5 .
  • James A. Jobling: Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names . Christopher Helm, London 2010, ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4 .
  • William Jardine, 7th Baronet of Applegarth: Trochilus (Spathura) Melananthera . Samuel Highley, London 1851, p. 111–112 ( books.google.de [accessed June 9, 2014]).
  • Jules Bourcier: Description of the nouvelles espèces de Trochilidèe . In: Revue Zoologique par La Société Cuvierienne . tape 9 , 1846, pp. 312-314 ( biodiversitylibrary.org [accessed June 9, 2014]).
  • Hans Hermann Carl Ludwig von Berlepsch, Jan Sztolcman: Descriptions de quelques Espèces nouvelle d'Oiseaux du Pérou central . In: The Ibis . Series 6, volume 6 , 1894, pp. 385-405 ( biodiversitylibrary.org [accessed June 9, 2014]).
  • Ferdinand Heine junior: Trochilidica . In: Journal of Ornithology . tape 11 , no. 63 , 1863, pp. 173-217 ( biodiversitylibrary.org [accessed June 9, 2014]).
  • Otto Kleinschmidt: Catalog of my ornithological collection . Commission publisher Gebauer Schwetschke A.-G., Halle, Saale ([accessed on June 9, 2014] started in 1935, completed in 1943).
  • John Gould: A monograph of the Trochilidæ, or family of humming-birds . tape 3 , supply 1. Taylor and Francis, London 1849 ( biodiversitylibrary.org [accessed July 18, 2011]).
  • Walter Edmond Clyde Todd: List of the hummingbirds in the collection of the Carnegie Museum . In: Annals of the Carnegie Museum . tape 29 , no. 12 , 1942, pp. 271-370 ( biodiversitylibrary.org ).
  • René Primevère Lesson: Les Trochilidées ou les Colibris et Les Oiseaux-Mouches Suivis d'un index général dans lequel sont décrites et classées méthodiquement toutes les races et espèces du genere Trochilus. Ouvrage orné de planches dessinées et gravées par les meilleurs artistes . Arthus-Bertrand, Paris 1831 (French, archive.org ).

Web links

Commons : flag sylphs  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d Steven Leon Hilty u. a. (2002), p. 429
  2. a b c Steven Leon Hilty u. a. (1986), p. 290.
  3. Thomas Scott Schulenberg u. a., p. 240.
  4. Charles Sibley gald u. a., p. 161.
  5. ^ IOC World Bird List Hummingbirds
  6. Jules Bourcier, p. 312.
  7. ^ A b Hans Hermann Carl Ludwig von Berlepsch u. a., p. 398.
  8. Ferdinand Heine junior, p. 210.
  9. Otto Kleinschmidt, p. 225.
  10. ^ William Jardine, 7th Baronet of Applegarth, p. 111.
  11. ^ John Gould, plate 164 plus text.
  12. ^ Walter Edmond Clyde Todd, p. 347.
  13. a b René Primevère Lesson, p. 105.
  14. James A. Jobling, p. 279.
  15. James A. Jobling, p. 313.
  16. James A. Jobling, p. 246.
  17. a b James A. Jobling, p. 204.
  18. Jules Bourcier, p. 313.