Galapagos Species Checklist

Pyrocephalus nanus Gould, 1838

Pájaro Brujo de Galápagos, Galápagos Vermilion Flycatcher

Galápagos Vermilion Flycatcher. Photo: Michael Dvorak, CDF.
Galápagos Vermilion Flycatcher. Photo: Michael Dvorak, CDF.

Taxonomy

Domain
Eukaryota

Kingdom
Animalia

Phylum
Chordata

Class
Aves

Order
Passeriformes

Family
Tyrannidae

Genus
Pyrocephalus

Species
nanus

Taxon category: Accepted

G. Jimenez-Uzcategui: "The taxonomy of this species has been very confusing: Ridgway (1896) mentions five “species” (considered even by most other authors of the time as subspecies): nanus, dubius, intercedens, carolensis, and abingdoni (the latter three of which he himself described). Two subspecies were recognized: P. r. nanus (Gould 1841), occurring on most islands, and P. r. dubius (Gould 1841), from San Cristóbal. Salvin (1876), but, suggested that specimens of P. r. dubius were instead juvenile males of P. r. nanus (Wiedenfeld 2006). However, the last study mitochondrial and nuclear genetic, data, morphology, and behavior suggest that Galápagos forms should be elevated to two full species: P. nanus Gould, 1838 (Galápagos Vermilion Flycatcher) and P. dubius Gould, 1839 (San Cristóbal Vermilion Flycatcher) (Carmi, etal. In press.)".

Status

IUCN Red List Category: Not evaluated

Ecology

Preference for an altitude zone in Galapagos: Dry zone - high altitude dry zone

Habitat preferences: Bosques abiertos, bosques, zona de Scalesia, bosques nativos de Zanthoxylum, bosques de guayaba introducida.

Feeding type: Insectivorous

Seems exclusively insectivorous.

Feeding preferences: Sit and wait predator, which perches on exposed branches and flies for insects, flies and moths. But it may also hunt for arthropods, such as spiders and caterpillars, ranging from tiny aphids to 4cm large caterpillars.

Trophic role: Carnivorous

Reproduction mode: Exclusively sexual

Reproductive biology: A year-round a territorial species; the male does conspicuous song flights; its song is rather short and weak. Pairs stay together for at least one season. Breeding takes place during the warmer part of the year but has been observed breeding as early as October. Mostly the female builds a cup nest of moss, lichens, and fine fibers, feathers from other species, placed 2 to 10m high in a fork or on a horizontal branch. The female lays 2-3 eggs and incubates while the male helps in feeding her. Both sexes feed the chicks; fledglings stay with their parents approximately 4 weeks after leaving the nest.

Distribution classification: Eutropical

Distribution

Distribution map of specimen collection localities or observation records for this species in our collections database.

Distribution: Breeds on most main islands except San Cristóbal (other species: P. dubius Gould, 1839) , Santa Fe, Rábida, Wolf, Española, Darwin, Genovesa, Baltra, because there are few or no recent records.

References

  • Wiedenfeld, D.A. (2006) Aves, the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador. Check List 2006 2(2): 1-27.
  • Harris, M.P. (1973) The Galápagos avifauna. Condor 75(3): 265-278.
  • Gifford, E.W. (1913) The birds of the Galápagos Islands, with observations on the birds of Cocos and Clipperton Islands (Columbiformes to Pelicaniformes). Expedition of the California Academy of Science, 1905 -1906. Part VIII. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences, ser. 4, 2(1): 1-132.
  • Salvin, O. (1876) On the avifauna of the Galápagos Archipelago. Transactions of the Zoological Society of London 9: 447-510.
  • Sundevall, C.J. (1871) On birds from the Galápagos Islands. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1871: 124-129.
  • Smith, E.A. (1877) Mollusca. In: Günther, A.: Account of the zoological collections made during the visit of H.M.S. "Petrel" to the Galapagos Islands. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London (1877): 69-73, 91-93.
  • Swarth, H.S. (1931) The Avifauna of the Galapagos Islands. Occ. Pap. Calif. Acad. Sci. 18: 1-299.
  • De Benedictis, P. (1966) The flight song display of two taxa of Vermilion Flycatcher, genus Pyrocephalus. The Condor 68:306-307.
  • Carmi, O. Witt, C.C., Jaramillo, A., Dumbachera, J.P. (In press.) Phylogeography of the Vermilion Flycatcher species complex: Multiple speciation events, shifts in migratory behavior, and an apparent extinction of a Galápagos-endemic bird species. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 102:152-173.

The “Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos Islands”, in French “Fondation Charles Darwin pour les îles Galapagos”, Association International sans but lucratif (“AISBL”), has its registered office located at Chaussée de la Hulpe 177 Bte 20 (rez) - 1170, Brussels, and is registered under the trade registry of Brussels under the number 0409.359.103.

© 2019 Charles Darwin Foundation. All rights reserved.