Eulampis holosericeus

Green-breasted Carib

Islands of Nevis? and Martinique?

This Humming-bird,” says M. Lesson, “so well characterized and so beautiful, lives exclusively in the islands of the Antilles, and is never found in Mexico.

The numerous examples we have examined in the collections of M. Florent Prévost, and in that of the Museum of Paris, were procured in the islands of St. Thomas and Porto Rico, whence they were sent by Maugé, and also from Martinique. These localities justify the name of Caribs which we have conventionally assigned to the birds of this form.” To these observations of M. Lesson, I have unfortunately nothing to add, except that I quite agree with him in believing the bird to be strictly confined to the Caribbean Islands, and that it neither inhabits Mexico nor any other part of the American continent.

In its general structure, and especially in the form of its wings and tail, it is closely allied to the more beautiful Eulampis jugularis; the disposition of its colouring, too, is very similar, although in some parts of a different hue; in the luminosity of the wings, however, the jugularis stands alone, differing as it does not only from this, but from every other species.

The perfect similarity in the colouring of the sexes renders the members of this little genus very conspicuous among the Trochihdæ.

Head, all the upper surface and wing-coverts reddish-green; wings purplish-brown; upper and under tail-coverts largely developed and of a glittering blue, some of the feathers changing to green; tail black, with steel-blue reflexions; chin, throat and breast golden grass-green; on the centre of the chest a patch of shining blue; flanks and abdomen yelvety-black; bill black; feet blackish-brown.

The figures are the size of life. The plant is the Pachystigma Pteleoïdes.


  • Trochilus holosericeus, Linn. Syst. Nat., tom. i. p. 191.—Ib. Gmel. Edit., tom. i. p. 491.—Lath. Ind. Orn., vol. i.p.305.—Less. Hist. Nat. des Col.,p.76. pl. 20.—Ib. Traité d’Orn., p. 291.—Ib. Ind. Gen. et Syn. des Ois. du gen. Trochilus, p. xi—Dumont de St. Croix, Dict. Sci. Nat., tom. x. p. 50.—Drap. Dict. ‘Class. d’Hist. Nat., tom. iv. p. 319.
  • Polytmus Mexicanus, Briss. Orn., tom. iii. p. 676. pl. xxxv. fig. 2.—Id., 8vo, tom. 1. p. 22.
  • Black-bellied green Humming-bird, Edw. Nat. Hist. of Birds, vol. i. pl. 36. fig. 1—Lath. Gen. Syn., vol. ii. p. 754.—Shaw, Gen. Zool., vol. viii. p. 307.—Lath. Gen. Hist , vol. iv. p. 313.
  • Trochilus aurigaster, Shaw.
  • Le Colibri vert et noir, Buff. Hist. Nat. des Ois., tom. vi. p. 53.
  • Le vert et noir, Aud. et Vieill. Ois. dor., tom. i. p. 19. pl. 6.
  • Le Colibri à ventre noir, Aud. et Vieill. Ois. dor., tom. i. p. 119. pl. 65.
  • Black-bellied American Humming-bird, Bancr. Hist. of Guiana, p. 169.
  • Polytmus holosericeus, Gray and Mitch. Gen. of Birds, vol. i. p. 108, Polytmus, sp. 14.
  • Eulampis holosericeus, Bonap. Consp. Gen. Av., p. 72, Eulampis, sp. 2.—Ib. Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 250.
  • Sericotes holosericeus, Reich. Aufz. der Col., p. 11.

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