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Large elaenia

Elaenia spectabilis
Photo by Luis Florit (Luis Adrián Florit’s Homepage)

Common name:
large elaenia (en); guaracava-grande (pt); élénie remarquable (fr); fiofío grande (es); graubrust-olivtyrann (de)

Order Passeriformes
Family Tyrannidae

This South American species is found from Colombia, through Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Brazil, and into Paraguay and Argentina.

These birds are 18 cm long and weigh 26-30 g.

These birds are found in tropical and sub-tropical moist lowland forests, especially along forest edges. They are also found in dry scrublands and cerrado habitats.

The large elaenia feeds on arthropods and fruits.

These birds breed in November-March. They build a cup-shaped nest using vegetable fibers, roots, lichens and mosses. The nest is placed on a fork in a tree about 5-8 m above the ground. There the female lays 2-3 cream-coloured eggs with dark marks, which are incubated by both sexes for 14-15 days. The chicks are fed insects and fruits by both parents and fledge 15-17 days after hatching.

IUCN status – LC (Least concern)
The large elaenia has a very large breeding range and, although the global population size has not been quantified, this species is described as common. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.
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