Family Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)

Least Concern

Purple-crowned Fairy (Heliothryx barroti)


French: Colibri féérique German: Purpurkron-Schmuckkolibri Spanish: Colibrí hada occidental

Trochilus Barroti


, 1843,

Cartagena, Colombia


Closely related to H. auritus, with which sometimes regarded as conspecific. Proposed race major (W Ecuador), sometimes included in H. auritus, is thought to be probably a young male of present species. Monotypic.


SE Mexico (E Tabasco, NE Chiapas) and Belize S on Caribbean slope to Nicaragua, then both slopes of Costa Rica and Panama through W Colombia (E to lower and middle Magdalena Valley, S to N Caldas) to SW Ecuador (El Oro).

Descriptive notes

11·5–13 cm; 5–5·7 g. Male has short straight bill, sharply pointed, black; forecrown iridescent violet, subocular band black, glittering purple on... read more


Calls include a faint “sit” or “dit” and a more strident “tsit” and “tsrr”. During chases, a liquid... read more


Occurs in wet lowland forests, at forest edges and in second growth from sea-level to 1000 m, most... read more

Food and feeding

Nectar of flowering vines, epiphytes, shrubs and trees, such as Passiflora, Guzmania, Cavendishia, or ... read more


Jan–May, occasionally to Jun. Cup-like, cone-shaped, and laterally attached nest is built in vines or dead twigs, and consists mainly... read more


Sedentary, but with seasonal dispersal to upper tropical forest zone.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Common in lowlands and foothills thrpoughout range. Occurs in several protected areas such as Manuel Antonio, Braulio... read more

Recommended citation

Schuchmann, K.L. & Boesman, P. (2020). Purple-crowned Fairy (Heliothryx barroti). 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).