Eriocnemis Godini

Godin’s Puff-leg


This species, although in every sense a true Eriocnemis, differs widely from all the other members of the genus: in size it exceeds the E. vestitus, and moreover differs from that species in its longer and more decidedly forked tail, and in the luminous feathers of the lower part of the back being of a more grassy and much less brilliant green; the whole of the under surface of the E. Godini, too, is of a rich glittering bronzy green, with the bronzy hue predominating and becoming still more coppery on the abdomen; the green of the throat also is interrupted by a small patch of blue, whichI suspect is more conspicuous in some specimens than in the one from which my figure was taken.

The native country of the Eriocnemis Godini is Ecuador, where it was procured by M. Bourcier, to whom I am indebted for the loan of his type specimen for the purpose of figuring it in the present work. It will be seen that this is only one of many instances in which I have had to record my obligations to this gentleman for the liberality with which he has seconded my efforts towards the elucidation of the natural history of this lovely group of birds.

Head, upper part of the back, and wing-coverts bronzy green; lower part of the back and upper tailcoverts shining grass-green; wings purplish brown; tail black with steel-blue reflexions; throat and upper surface bronzy green, gradually deepening into rich bronze on the abdomen; on the centre of the throat a small patch of blue; tarsi thickly clothed with white feathers; under tail-coverts fine blue; bill black; feet blackish brown.

The female is at present unknown.

The figures are of the natural size. The plant is the Vriesia psittacina, var. rubro-bracteata.


  • Trochilus Godini, Bourc. Compt. Rend. de l’Acad. des Sci., tom. xxxii. p, 186.
  • Eriocnemys godini, Bonap. Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 252.
  • Eriocnemis Godini, Reich. Auf. der Col., p. 9.—Ib. Troch. Enum., p. 6.

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