Red-legged Honeycreeper

The Red-legged Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes cyaneus), is a small bird in the tanager family. It is found in the tropical New World from southern Mexico south to Peru, Bolivia and central Brazil, and on Cuba, Trinidad and Tobago. This is a species of forest edge, open woodland, and cocoa and citrus plantations. The Red-legged Honeycreeper is often found in small groups.

The Red-legged Honeycreeper is 4.8 inches long, weighs 0.50 ounces and has a medium-long black, slightly down-curved bill. The male is violet-blue with black wings, tail and back, and bright red legs. The crown of its head is turquoise, and the underwing, visible only in flight, is lemon yellow. After breeding, the male molts into an eclipse plumage, mainly greenish with black wings.

Females and young are mainly green, with paler, faintly streaked underparts. The legs are red-brown in the female, and brown in young birds. It feeds on insects and some fruit and nectar. It responds readily to the (easily imitated) call of the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl.

The female Red-legged Honeycreeper builds a small cup nest in a tree, and incubates the clutch of two brown-blotched white eggs for 12-13 days, with a further 14 days to fledging.