Family Hummingbirds (Trochilidae)

Least Concern

White-bellied Mountain-gem (Lampornis hemileucus)


French: Colibri à gorge lilas German: Veilchenkehlnymphe Spanish: Colibrí gorjivioleta

Oreopyra hemileuca


, 1865,

Turrialba, Costa Rica


Phylogenetic study of Lampornis suggested that this species does not belong in this genus#R. Monotypic.


Highlands on Caribbean slope from NC Costa Rica to W Panama (Veraguas); also occurs locally on Pacific slope of Panama.

Descriptive notes

10–11 cm; male 6·2 g, female 5·1 g. Bill black, feet dark flesh-coloured. Adult male has crown and face glittering green, postocular stripe white, rest of... read more


Song a medley of squeaks, dry or liquid trills, and sputtering notes. Calls include a repeated,... read more


Canopy and edge of cool, very wet subtropical forest, descending to shrub level along borders, gaps... read more

Food and feeding

Visits flowers of trees (Calliandra, Clusia, Inga) and shrubs (Acanthaceae, Besleria, Cephaelis... read more


Aug or Sept–Mar in Costa Rica. Breeding male often advertises flower-centred territories by complex, warbling song. Nest undescribed. read more


Following breeding, at least part of population descends to lower elevations, regularly to 400... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. CITES II. Restricted-range species: present in Costa Rica and Panama Highlands EBA. Locally very common. Large areas of its wet subtropical forest... read more

Recommended citation

Stiles, F.G. & Boesman, P. (2020). White-bellied Mountain-gem (Lampornis hemileucus). 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 27 February 2020).