Amazilia leucophæa

White-breasted Amazili

Southern Peru. Collected in the vicinity of the Volcano of Arequipa by M. Warszewicz.

I am equally certain with regard to the identity of this species as I am with respect to the A. Dumerili, the specimens from which Dr. Reichenbach took his description of his A. leucophea and my own having come from the same source—M. Warszewicz, who collected them in the vicinity of the volcano of Arequipa in South Peru.

In size it closely resembles A. Dumeri; but it is smaller than A. pristina, from which it also differs in the colour of its mandibles, which are said to be either white or fleshy white. In the accompanying Plate I have figured this new species of the size of life; and it would have been a source of pleasure to me to have been able to give some account of its history; but such unfortunately is not the case, M. Warszewicz’s visit being so hurried a one that he had only time to snatch, as it were, the present and several other new birds from their native forests in passing. If several novelties could be thus obtained under very disadvantageous circumstances, surely we may regard their acquisition as an evidence that a careful investigation of the fine countries of Peru and Bolivia would well repay the researches of the traveller and the naturalist.

I am a little uncertain with respect to the female of this species. Dr. Reichenbach has, it is true, described it; but as I have never seen his specimen, and the three in my own collection are alike, I must defer giving a description of the female, to some future opportunity.

Crown of the head, all the upper surface and wing-coverts golden green, somewhat obscure on the head; upper tail-coverts and tail rufous, the two centre ones with a zone of greenish bronze near the tip; wings pale purplish brown; throat and sides of the neck glittering golden green; on the centre of the chest a patch of white; under surface rufous or sandy red; under tail-coverts very pale rufous fringed with white; bill fleshy white with a dark-coloured tip.

The figures are of the natural size. The plant is the Callandria Tweediei.


  • Amazilia leucophea, Reich. Auf. der Col., p. 10.
  • Amazilia leucophea, Ib., p. 24.

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