Lampornis gramineus

Green-throated Mango

Trinidad, Cayenne, and Guiana

So much confusion exists respecting the synonymy of this species, that, after instituting the most rigid examination, I am compelled to give up the attempt to unravel it, and content myself with enumerating those terms only which, it appears to me, certainly have reference to the present bird.

The state of confusion alluded to is due to two causes: first, from Lesson and the older authors considering the species to be a native of St. Domingo, and, secondly, in consequence of the females of two or three species bearing a great similarity to each other. Now I can positively state that the bird does not inhabit St. Domingo; nor do I believe it is to be found in any of the West India Islands, unless it be in Trinidad, and if so, that is the only one. Its true habitat is Cayenne and Guiana, whence all our collections are supplied with examples, and where it must be very numerous, as shown by the great number of specimens sent to Europe from those countries.

The Lampornis gramineus is a large species, distinguished by the boldness and breadth of its markings; it differs from all the other members of its genus in the grass-green of its throat, a colour beautifully relieved by the jet-black hue of its breast and abdomen. The females and young males present a very different style of colouring from that of the male, both on the under surface and in the markings of the tail, which are very beautiful.

The male has the head and neck golden green, gradually passing into rich coppery green on the back, wing-coverts and upper tail-coverts; wings deep purplish brown; throat luminous grass-green; flanks golden green, with a tuft of white on each side; centre of the abdomen bluish black; in certain lights the entire abdomen and flanks appear jet-black; two centre tail-feathers bronzy purple, the remainder violet, broadly margined and tipped with steel-blue; vent white; under tail-coverts purplish green.

The young male has the upper surface mottled green and coppery bronze; sides of the throat and abdomen chestnut; on the centre of the throat a mark of luminous green, bounded on each side by white; down the centre of the abdomen a mark of black, bounded on each side with white; two centre tail-feathers bronzy green; the remainder chestnut-red with a rich bloom of purple; crossed near the tip by a broad band, which on the outer webs is bronzy green, on the inner steel-blue; all but the two middle feathers tipped with greyish white.

The female has all the upper surface and flanks golden green, the golden hue predominating on the rump and upper tail-coverts; throat white, with a large patch of black down the centre; central tail-feathers bronzy green, passing into black at the tip; the remainder chestnut-red, glossed with purple, crossed near the tip by a broad band of bluish black and tipped with white.

The figures are of the size of life. The plant is the Allosorus flexuosus.


  • Trochilus gramineus, Linn. Syst. Nat., tom. i. p. 488.—Ib. Gmel. Edit., tom. i. p. 488.— Dumont, Dict. Sci. Nat., tom. x. p. 48.—Drapiez, Dict. Class. d’Hist. Nat., tom. iv. p. 318.—Less. Hist. Nat. des Col., pp. 52, 56. pls. 12, 12 bis.—Ib. Ind. Gen. et Syn. des Ois. du Gen. Trochilus, p. x.—Ib. Traité d’Orn., p. 290.—Vieill. Ois. de l’Am. Sept., tom. ii. p. 73.
  • Trochilus pectoralis, Lath. Ind. Orn., vol. i. p. 306.—Vieill. Ency. Méth. Orn., part ii. p. 551. —Steph. Cont. Shaw’s Gen Zool., vol. xiv. p: 240.
  • Le Hausse-col vert, Buff. Hist. Nat. des Ois., tom. vi. p. 58.—Vieill. Ois. Dor., tom. i. p. 23. pl. 9.
  • Le Colibri a cravate verte, Vieill. Ois. Dor., tom. i. p. 25. pl. 10.—Buff. Hist. Nat. des Ois., tom. vi. p. 56.—Ib. Sonn. Edit., tom. xxii. p. 277.—Ib. Pl. Enl. 621. fig. 1.
  • Le Plastron violet, Vieill. Ois. Dor., tom. i. p. 124. pl. 70?
  • Colibri a gorge verte de Cayenne, Buff. Pl. Enl. 671. fig. 1.
  • Colibri du Mexique, Buff. Pl. Enl. 580. fig. 2.
  • Trochilus maculatus, Gmel. Edit. Linn. Syst. Nat., tom. i. p. 488.—Vieill. Ency. Méth. Orn., part ii. p. 563.
  • Trochilus gularis, Gmel. Edit. Linn. Syst. Nat., tom. i. p. 491.—Lath. Ind. Orn., vol. i. p. 306.—Vieill. Eney. Méth. Orn., part ii. p. 553.
  • Trochilus marmoratus, Vieill. Eney. Méth. Orn., part 1. p. 567.
  • Polytmus domiucus, Gray and Mitch. Gen. of Birds, vol. i. p. 108, Polytmus, sp. 11.—Bonap. Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 250.
  • Lampornis dominicus, Bonap. Consp. Gen. Ay., p. 71, Lampornis, sp. 2.
  • Hypophania dominica, Reichenb. Aufz. der Colibris, p. 11.
  • Green-throated Humming-bird, Lath. Gen. Syn., vol. ii. p. 755.—Ib. Gen. Hist., vol. iv. p. 305.
  • Black-breasted Humming-bird, Lath. Gen. Syn., vol. ii. p. 756.—Shaw, Gen. Zool., vol. viii. p. 298.—Lath. Gen. Hist., vol. iv. p. 302.

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