Family Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)

Least Concern

Violet-fronted Brilliant (Heliodoxa leadbeateri)


French: Brillant à front violet German: Violettstirn-Brillantkolibri Spanish: Brillante frentivioleta

Trochilus Leadbeateri


, 1843,

Caracas, Venezuela


Apparently closest to H. jacula. An intergeneric hybrid has been recorded between present species and Heliangelus clarisse. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • H. l. leadbeateri (Bourcier, 1843) – N Venezuela (coastal mountains from Falcón E to Miranda).
  • H. l. parvula Berlepsch, 1887 – Sierra de Perijá, and Andes of W Venezuela (Trujillo S to Táchira) and Colombia (E Andes S to Macarena Mts, locally in Magdalena and Cauca Valleys, and possibly also N end of C Andes).
  • H. l. sagitta (Reichenbach, 1854) – E Ecuador and N Peru (S to Pasco).
  • H. l. otero (Tschudi, 1844) – E slope in C & S Peru and NW Bolivia (to Cochabamba).
  • Descriptive notes

    11–13 cm; male 7·1–8·5 g, female 6·6–7·5 g. Bill almost straight, blackish. Male bronze-green above turning coppery on neck,... read more


    Presumed song is a continuous series of single strident “chup” or “tchep” notes, at a rate of c. 1... read more


    Pre-montane rainforest and cloudforest and forest edge, occasionally also scrub, small clearings,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Takes nectar mainly at flowers in lower to middle strata (1–10 m) inside forest or near small openings at forest edge. Usually... read more


    Jan–May. Clutch size 2; incubation by female. No further information.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. CITES II. Reported estimates of abundance are to some extent contradictory, but species appears to be quite common, at least locally. Has been... read more

    Recommended citation

    Heynen, I., Boesman, P. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Violet-fronted Brilliant (Heliodoxa leadbeateri). 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).