Hada Oriental/Black-eared Fairy/Heliothryx auritus

Foto: Nick Athanas

Nombre es español: Hada Oriental

Nombre en inglés: Black-eared Fairy

Nombre científico: Heliothryx auritus

Familia: Trochilidae

Canto: Andrew Spencer

El colibrí hada oriental​, también colibrí hada de orejas azules, colibrí-hada de oreja negra, colibrí hada orejazul, hada orejinegro, hada orejinegra o hada oriental (Heliothryx auritus)​ es una especie de ave apodiforme de la familia Trochilidae que vive en Sudamérica.

Foto: Nick Athanas


Mide en promedio 12,5 cm de longitud. Presenta dorso verde brillante, las partes inferiores blancas y en la cara una máscara negra. El macho tiene garganta verde y una mancha azul violácea brillante a los lados de la cabeza y cola corta. La hembra presenta garganta branca y cola larga.​

Distribución y hábitat

Se encuentra en Bolivia, Brasil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guayana francesa, Guyana, Perú, Surinam y Venezuela.​

Vive en el dosel del bosque, permaneciendo casi siempre en los niveles altos.​


La especie fue descrita científicamente por el naturalista alemán Johann Friedrich Gmelin en 1788.​

Se reconocen tres subespecies:​

  • Heliothryx auritus auriculatus (Nordmann, 1835)
  • Heliothryx auritus auritus (Gmelin, 1788)
  • Heliothryx auritus phainolaemus (Gould, 1855)
Foto: Jorge Muñoz


Se alimenta del néctar de las flores y de insectos que atrapa en vuelo.​


Construye un nido en forma de cuenco, en la punta de las ramas, a unos 10 m de altura del suelo. La hembra pone 2 huevos blancos. ​La hembra sola incuba los huevos, durante 15 días. Los polluelos abandonan el nido 23 a 26 días después de la eclosión de los huevos.

Foto: Jorge Muñoz

Black-eared fairy

The black-eared fairy (Heliothryx auritus) is a species of hummingbird in the subfamily Polytminae, the mangoes. It is found in every mainland South American country except Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, and Uruguay.

Taxonomy and systematics

The black-eared fairy and the purple-crowned fairy (H. barroti) were treated as conspecific by some authors but are now considered to be a superspecies; they are the only members of the genus. Three subspecies are recognised, the nominate H. a. auritusH. a. auriculatus, and H. a. phainolaemus.


The black-eared fairy is 10.1 to 13.7 cm (4.0 to 5.4 in) long and weighs 4 to 6.3 g (0.14 to 0.22 oz). The nominate male has bright shiny green upperparts, pure white underparts, and a long pointed tail which has darkish blue central and white outer feathers. It has a black patch below the eye, glittering purple ear coverts, and a short, straight, black bill. The female is similar but has no purple on the face, its throat and breast have grayish dots, and the three outer pairs of tail feathers have a black band at their base. Immatures have cinnamon fringes on their upperparts’ plumage and are otherwise similar to the female. The male H. a. auriculatus has green on the chin and the sides of its throat. The male H. a. phainolaemus has a varible green throat and chin and the female does not have the noninate’s gray spots on the underparts.

Distribution and habitat

The nominate subspecies of black-eared fairy is found from southeastern Colombia and eastern Ecuador through northern Brazil north of the Amazon River to northeastern Venezuela and through the Guianas. H. a. phainolaemus is found in the Brazilian states of Pará and Maranhão south of the Amazon. H. a. auriculatus has two separate populations. One is in eastern Peru, central Bolivia, and central Brazil south of the Amazon as far east as the Tapajós River. Its other population is in southeastern Brazil from Bahia south to São Paulo (state) and irregularly further south. The species inhabits the interior and edges of wet primary and secondary forest. In elevation it is most common below 400 m (1,300 ft) but it occurs as high as 800 m (2,600 ft).



The black-eared fairy is believed to be sedentary, but some irregular movements have been reported in southern Brazil.


The black-eared fairy mostly forages in the mid-story and canopy, though in terra firme forest it will forage at all levels. It takes nectar from a variety of flowering plants, both by inserting its bill into the corolla and by piercing the base of the flower to «rob» nectar. It also feeds on small insects on the wing, unlike the purple-crowned fairy.


The black-eared fairy breeds throughout the year. The female alone builds the nest, incubates the eggs, and cares for the young. It makes a small cup nest of plant down on a vertical branch, usually between 3 and 30 m (9.8 and 98 ft) above the ground. The clutch size is two eggs. The incubation time is 15 to 16 days with fledging 23 to 26 days after hatch. It breeds for the first time when in its second year.


The black-eared fairy’s calls include «a short high-pitched ‘tsit’ and richer ‘tchip’, repeated at intervals.»


The IUCN has assessed the black-eared fairy as being of Least Concern, though its population size is not known and believed to be decreasing. It has a very large range, is considered fairly common in parts of it, and occurs in several protected areas.

Fuentes: Wikipedia/eBird/xeno-canto

Deja un comentario