Eucephala chlorocephala

Green-headed Sapphire

The environs of Guaranda in Ecuador, according to M. Bourcier

This species has some characters in common with the one I have called Eucephala smaragdo-cærulea, but it differs from that bird in several particulars of sufficient importance to warrant its being regarded as distinct: in the first place, there is no blue whatever on the chin and upper part of the breast, those parts being clear green like the remainder of the under surface; in the next, the under tail-coverts are white with a stain of olive-brown in the centre of each feather, while the same feathers in the E. smaragdo-cerulea are green; and lastly, the upper tail-coverts are bronzy brown in the present bird, and bright green, even brighter than that of the back, in the other.

The Eucephala chlorocephala is a very rare bird, and its native country is I believe at present unknown; for although M. Bourcier states that it flies in the environs of Guaranda in Ecuador, I think that gentleman must have been misinformed on this point, and that in all probability the bird inhabits Brazil; but of this I am of course uncertain.

Of its habits and economy nothing has been recorded; nor is it even known whether any difference occurs in the outward appearance of the two sexes.

Crown of the head bluish grass-green; all the upper surface and wing-coverts bronzy green; wings purplish brown; upper tail-coverts rich coppery bronze; tail uniform dark steel-blue; chin, throat, and abdomen shining grass-green; thighs white; under tail-coverts dark olive broadly margined with white; bill black; base of the under mandible fleshy.

The figures are of the natural size. The plant is the Sciodacalyx Warszewiczii.


  • Hylocharis chlorocephala, Bourc. in Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 457.
  • Hylocharis chlorocephalus, Bonap. Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 255.
  • Agyrtria chlorocephala, Reich. 'Troch. Enum., p. 7.
  • Lepidopyga chlorocephala, Cab. Mus. Hein., Theil i. p. 40, note.

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