The Lance-tailed Manakin, Chiroxiphia lanceolata, is a small passerine bird which breeds in tropical Central and South America from Costa Rica to northern Venezuela.
This manakin is a fairly common bird of dry and moist deciduous forests, but not rainforest. The female builds a cup nest in a tree; two brown-mottled cream eggs are laid, and incubated entirely by the female for about 20 days.
Like other manakins, the Lance-tailed Manakin is a compact, brightly coloured forest bird, typically 13.5 cm long and weighing 17.5 g. Both sexes have the two central tail feathers elongated to form a spike. The male is mainly black, with a red crown patch, bright sky-blue back, and bright orange legs.
The female has olive-green upperparts, and somewhat paler olive underparts. Young males are olive, but show a red cap and the start of a blue back as they mature.
This species is similar to Blue-backed Manakin, Chiroxiphia pareola, which breeds further south and east, but the latter lacks the spiky tail, and the male has a somewhat darker blue back.
The male Lance-tailed Manakin has an interesting breeding display, unusual in that it is cooperative rather than competitive. Two males perch next to each other on a bare stick and jump up and down alternately, sometimes giving short flights. Groups of birds may perform together, with a different stick for each pair of displaying males.
Lance-tailed Manakin has a number of calls, including a Toe-LEE-do, a curry-ho, and a frog-like buzzing croak given by displaying males.
These manakins eat fruit and some insects.
Database entry includes justification for why this species is of least concern
Birds of Venezuela by Hilty, ISBN 0-7136-6418-5
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Lance-tailed Manakin