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Version 1.0

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Long-tailed Manakin Chiroxiphia linearis

Alina Kanaksi, Clara Stuligross, Jose I. Pareja, and Wendy Tori
Version: 1.0 — Published May 11, 2012



Males display from late February to early September, with a peak in April and May (Slud 1957, Foster 1976, Foster 1977b). Nesting may occur year-round, although Wikelski et al. (2003) found that other manakin species, the Golden-collared Manakin (Manacus vitellinus) and the Red-capped Manakin (Pipra mentalis), have fully active gonads for only about half of the year. Also, nests with young have only been found in April through July. Long-tailed Manakin nests are placed in a fork in a branch, in a location that has leaf cover above the nest. Small trees are preferred, especially Terminalia lucida (Combretaceae), a species of Eugenia (Myrtaceae), Ardisia revoluta (Primulaceae), and a Psychotria species (Rubiaceae). The nest is suspended between two small forked branches with an unidentified kind of insect cocoon or spider silk, or fungal hyphae. The nest itself is a mixture of fungal hyphae, crushed leaves, twigs, moss, and, less frequently, strips of bark or grass blades. The innermost layer of the nest is the thickest and contains mostly fungal hyphae and leaf pieces. About 35% of surveyed nests (n = 22) also included attached leaves that hang vertically from the outer layer of the nest for a distance of up to 8.5 cm, possibly to disguise the nest. The nest itself is cup-like, with an inner diameter of 5.87 cm (n = 23, range 4.3-6.0 cm) and an inner depth of 2.24 cm (n = 24, range 1.5-3.0 cm). Eggs are beige-tan in color, "lightly to heavily marked with medium to dark chocolate brown spots" (Foster 1976). These spots may be distributed over the entire shell, but they are more commonly concentrated towards the larger end of the egg, especially in a 4-5 mm band where the egg diameter is greatest. Eggs of this description have been observed in both Oaxaca, Mexico and Guanacaste Province, Costa Rica. In Oaxaca, eggs had an average length of 22.13 mm (n = 18, range 21.1-22.8 mm) and greatest width of 16.09 mm (n = 17, range 15.6-16.8 mm). In Guanacaste Province, eggs had an average length of 22.40 mm (n = 10, range 20.3-24.0 mm), greatest width of 16.52 mm (n = 9, range 15.5-18.0 mm), and weight of 2.94 g (n = 9, range 2.5-3.25 g). Clutch size in Oaxaca was 2.0 eggs (n = 9, range 2-2), in Guanacaste Province 1.6 (N=10, R=1-2). The incubation period is unknown. Little incubation has been observed in the morning, and females do not seem to incubate directly after laying. Long-tailed Manakins have low nesting success; in Foster’s study (1976) only 1 of 15 observed eggs hatched. In another study by McDonald (1993), nestling survival to fledgling was 6-22% (n = 32). Males do not participate in nestling care. Nestlings were observed regurgitating seeds of Trichiana martiana (Meliaceae) and one other unidentified fruit. It is unclear if fruit is the only food of nestlings. Nestlings fledge in August or September (Foster 1976). There does not appear to be cooperative brood care, and no brood parasitism, either inter- or intraspecific, has been recorded.

Recommended Citation

Kanaksi, A., C. Stuligross, J. I. Pareja, and W. Tori (2012). Long-tailed Manakin (Chiroxiphia linearis), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.lotman1.01