Family Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)

Least Concern

Pale-bellied Hermit (Phaethornis anthophilus)


French: Ermite anthophile German: Fleckenkehl-Schattenkolibri Spanish: Ermitaño ventripálido

Trochilus anthophilus


, 1843,

upper Magdalena Valley, Colombia


In the past was sometimes placed in genus Ametrornis. An almost straight-billed hermit with no known close relatives, somewhat resembling P. eurynome. A melanistic individual of doubtful origin was described as race fuliginosus, but never verified as referring to a valid population. Birds of nominate race in E Andes of Colombia have smaller wing and bill than other populations; may be separable as fuscicapillus should same differences be confirmed for Venezuelan birds. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. a. hyalinus Bangs, 1901 – Pearl Is, off Pacific coast of Panama.
  • P. a. anthophilus (Bourcier, 1843) – C Panama to Colombia (Magdalena Valley and E of Andes) and W & N Venezuela.
  • Descriptive notes

    c. 13 cm; male 4·5–5·5 g, female 4–5 g. A medium-sized hermit hummingbird with dark green to olive-green upperparts and light grey underparts,... read more


    Voice poorly documented. Calls include rather piercing, high-pitched notes.


    Semi-deciduous forest and several types of drier woodland, second growth, brushy edges, thorny... read more

    Food and feeding

    Nectar of Heliconia, Brownea, etc., and small arthropods. Most detailed study, in Cesar, Colombia, reported nectar of... read more


    Nest construction recorded Dec in Colombia; breeding Oct–Feb and Apr in Venezuela; gonadal condition indicates Apr and Jun in... read more


    Records Apr and Dec in NE Venezuela may indicate regular movements; more data needed.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. CITES II. Uncommon to locally common. Abundant in drier areas of coastal Venezuela and at head of Magdalena Valley, Colombia. Population near Santa... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hinkelmann, C., Kirwan, G.M. & Boesman, P. (2020). Pale-bellied Hermit (Phaethornis anthophilus). 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 29 February 2020).