Thalurania? Wagleri

Wagler’s Wood-Nymph


It has long been a question with me, as I am sure it must have been with every person who has made the Trochilidæ their study, to which genus of the family this species should be assigned: some Trochilidists may hereafter go so far as to separate it from all the genera at present proposed, and make it the type of a new one; but, after an examination of the female, which I have lately received through the kindness of M. Bourcier, I have little hesitation in associating it with the other Wood-Nymphs of the genus Thalurania, a genus comprising many species widely dispersed over the continent of America.

The present bird is the only one of them that has the throat and the crown of the head blue. Its native habitat is the northern part of Brazil, but it may perhaps visit Guiana. It is by no means a common bird, and unfortunately most of the specimens hitherto sent to Europe have been more or less defective.

The male has the crown of the head, face, chin and throat very rich deep blue; all the upper surface and wing-coverts shining bronzy-green; under surface shining dark grass-green; wings very dark purplishbrown; upper tail-coverts and tail very dark steel-blue; bill black; the basal portion of the under mandible fleshy.

The female has the crown of the head and greater wing-coverts green; upper surface and lesser wingcoverts bronzy-green; upper tail-coverts bluish-green; wings purplish-brown; tail steel-blue glossed with green, and the two outer feathers on each side tipped with white; lores and ear-coverts brown; under surface brownish-white, washed with bronze on the flanks; upper mandible dark brown; under mandible fleshy-brown.

The Plate represents the two sexes of the natural size. The plant is the Burlingtonia decora.


  • Ornismya Waglerii, Less. Hist. Nat. des Ois. Mou., p. 203. pl. 73.—Ib. Traité d’Orn., p. 274.— Ib. Ind. Gen. et Syn. des Ois. du gen. Trochilus, p. xxi.
  • Le Saphir-émeraude, Aud. et Vieill. Ois. dor., tom. i. p: 79. pl. 36.
  • Trochilus Waglerii, Sard. Nat. Lib. Humming Birds, vol. ii. p. 83. pl. 16.
  • Cynanthus Waglerii, Jard. Nat. Lib. Humming Birds, vol. ii. p. 147.
  • Hylocharis Wagleri, Gray and Mitch. Gen. of Birds, vol. i. p. 114, Hylocharis, sp. 14.
  • Thalurania Wagleri, Bonap. Consp. Gen.sAv., p. 77, Thalurania, sp. 6.—Reichenb. Aufz. der Col., p. 7.—Bonap. Rev. et Mag. de Zool. 1854, p. 254.

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