Black nunbird

Black nunbird
Monasa atra

Photo by Bruno Salaroli (Internet Bird Collection)

Common name:
black nunbird (en); chora-chuva-de-asa-branca (pt); barbacou noir (fr); monja negra (es); mohrentrappist (de)

Order Galbuliformes
Family Bucconidae

This species is found in western and southern Venezuela, through the Guyanas and into northern Brazil, only north of the Amazon river.

These birds are 25-29 cm long and weigh 85-95 g.

The black nunbird is mostly found in moist tropical forests and swamp forests, but also in moist scrublands, second growths and plantations. They are present from sea level up to an altitude of 1.000 m.

They mostly feed on insects and spiders, but also take small lizards.

Not much is known about the breeding behaviour of the black nunbird. They nest in a hole in the ground, where the female lays 2-3 shiny white eggs. There is no information regarding the incubation and fledgling periods, but they possibly breed twice per year.

IUCN status – LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and is described as fairly common. Based on current models of  Amazonian deforestation this species is likely to suffer considerable habitat loss in the near future, but it is not considered threatened at present.

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