Family Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)

Least Concern

Gould's Brilliant (Heliodoxa aurescens)


French: Brillant à bandeau bleu German: Rotbrust-Brillantkolibri Spanish: Brillante pechicastaño
Other common names: Gould's Jewelfront

Trochilus (Lampornis) aurescens


, 1846,

locality unclear (north Brazil and east Peru both suggested)


Until recently often placed in monotypic genus Polyplancta, but morphological and behavioural parallels, supported by genetic analysis, suggest that species belongs in Heliodoxa; probably closely related to H. schreibersii and H. whitelyana. In the past, was occasionally placed in genus Clytolaema. Despite fairly extensive range, shows only slight degree of variation. Monotypic.


S Venezuela (S Amazonas, Bolívar) through Amazonian Colombia (W Putumayo, Vaupés, Amazonas), E Ecuador and E Peru (S to Puno) to N Bolivia (Pando, Beni, Cochabamba) and NW Brazil (Amazonas and S Pará S to Rondônia; recorded on Marajó I).

Descriptive notes

11–12 cm; male 6 g, unsexed c. 6·2 ± 0·6 g. Bill straight, dark-coloured. Male with narrow frontlet glittering purplish blue, upperparts shining... read more


Presumed song is a continuous series of high-pitched (c. 9 kHz), insect-like “seee” notes, at a... read more


Understorey of humid forest, especially near creeks and damp places, only rarely at forest edge and... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly feeds on nectar of flowering shrubs but also takes insects in the air by hawking.


Jun–Sept. Clutch size two eggs; incubation by female. No further information.



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. CITES II. Generally varies from uncommon to locally common over its fairly sizeable range. Quickly accepts man-made habitats. Present in Amacayacu... read more

Recommended citation

Heynen, I., Kirwan, G.M. & Boesman, P. (2020). Gould's Brilliant (Heliodoxa aurescens). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 19 February 2020).