Black-throated trogon

Trogon rufus

The black-throated trogon, also known as yellow-bellied trogon, is a near passerine bird in the trogon family, Trogonidae. Although it is also called "yellow-bellied trogon" it is not the only trogon with a yellow belly. It breeds in lowlands from Honduras south to western Ecuador and northern Argentina.


Like most trogons, it has distinctive male and female plumages and with soft colourful feathers. This relatively small species is 23–24 cm long and weighs 54-57 g, with a white undertail with black barring, a yellow bill and wing coverts which are vermiculated with black and white, but appear grey at any distance. The male black-throated trogon has a green head, upper breast and back, black face and throat, and golden yellow belly. The female has a brown head, upper breast and back, rufous upper tail and yellow belly. Immatures resemble the adults but are duller, and young males have a brown throat, breast and wing coverts.

The call is a churring ''krrrrrr'', and the song is a typical trogon series of a few clear whistles, ''cuh cuh cuh cuh''.

It is a resident of the lower levels of damp tropical forests, and prefers the deep shade of the understory. Their broad bills and weak legs reflect their diet and arboreal habits. Although their flight is fast, they are reluctant to fly any distance. They typically perch upright and motionless.

Black-throated trogons feed mainly on arthropods as well as some fruit, often taken in flight; they are one of the most insectivorous trogon species of their range. They opportunistically catch arthropods that have been startled by other predators, such as coatis .

The black-throated trogon nests 1–6 m high in an unlined shallow cavity, with a typical clutch of two white eggs.
Status: Least concern
EX EW CR EN VU NT LC
Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionChordata
ClassAves
OrderTrogoniformes
FamilyTrogonidae
GenusTrogon
SpeciesT. rufus
Photographed in
Costa Rica
Panama