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Fawn-breasted Brilliant - BirdForum Opus

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Photo © by mmdnje
Mindo, Ecuador, December 2011
Heliodoxa rubinoides


Straightforward when in fully adult breeding plumage. Some individuals may have a very pale ground colour, almost grey, suggesting another species like a woodnymph. Identify those by the heavy bill and usually clearly visible post ocular whitish spot (both sexes) / pale moustachial streak (female). Sometimes these latter two marks can be more difficult to discern but should be present, and on close inspection the ground colour should have at least a hint of cinnamon.


South America: found in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.



There are 3 subspecies[1]:

  • H. r. rubinoides:
  • H. r. aequatorialis:
  • Western slope of Andes of Colombia and western Ecuador
Photo © by Aralcal
Aralcal, Manizales, Colombia, August 2010
  • H. r. cervinigularis:
  • Eastern slope of Andes of eastern Ecuador and north-eastern Peru


Subtropical montane and coffee forests, forest edges and highland gardens. Observed at heights around 5600 ft asl.



Photo © by Chris Faygyal
Tandayapa Bird Lodge in Ecuador, September 2004
  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2012. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to October 2012. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  2. Avibase
  3. BF Member observations

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