Bird Families

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The red-headed manakin or red-headed pipra, or the red-capped manakin belongs to the family of manakin, the order of passerines.

Outward signs of a red-headed manakin

The red-headed manakin is a small songbird measuring 10 cm and weighing about 12.5-18.5 grams.

The wings and tail are very short. The legs are thin, weak, yellow, the outer toe is at a considerable distance from the middle. The body of the males is colored black, the head from the forehead and the zygomatic region are red, the thighs are creamy yellow. Females are more modestly colored: their back is brown or olive, and the abdomen is yellowish or brownish.

Spread of the red-headed manakin

The red-headed manakin is found in Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, Mexico, and Colombia.

Red-capped pipra (Pipra mentalis).

Habitats of the red-headed manakin

The red-headed manakin lives in the humid jungle. Inhabits moist forests and mature secondary forests below 500 meters above sea level, in Mexico up to 750 meters.

Features of the behavior of the red-headed manakin

Red-headed manakins are sedentary birds. Only sometimes they come down from the trees a little lower. The presence of a bird can be easily detected by a prolonged whistle "psi-i-i", which is emitted by a male guarding his territory, declaring that the crown of this tree is occupied. Sometimes birds give themselves away with the characteristic buzzing sounds made by their wings during flight: as if someone nearby sat down to spin yarn, spinning an old spindle.By way of life, red-haired pipras resemble our titmice.

Birds also live in small flocks and flutter from branch to branch in dense thickets, picking juicy berries.

Red-headed manakin food

Red-headed manakins feed on small berries and fruits, only from time to time they eat the seeds of various plants. Sometimes insects are captured with food. The process of digestion of food lasts for the red-headed pipra only 18 minutes, so the birds constantly sit on branches strewn with fruits.

Reproduction of the red-headed manakin

The breeding season for red-headed manakin occurs in March-June in Costa Rica, February-July in Panama. The bright color of the male feather coat is demonstrated as a challenge to competitors in the struggle for the nesting site and attracts individuals of the opposite sex. During the mating season, males show complex movements in flight. To attract the attention of a feathered girlfriend, the male performs such a ritual: they quickly flicker in the crown of a tree, making up to 80 flaps of their wings per second, resembling a nimble hummingbird.

The coloration of females is fundamentally different from that of males.

Hear the voice of the red-headed manakin

The similarity lies in the fact that the bird moves in such small and fast movements back and forth that it seems as if the manakin moves without the help of his legs. The construction of nests in all representatives of the Manakin family is exclusively females.

Caring birds locate the nest not high from the ground in dense thickets.The building material is usually moss, and the lining is plant fluff.

Attracting a female, the red-capped piper makes very sharp sounds and flaps its wings up to 80 per second.

The nest is in the shape of a bowl. The female lays two pale eggs covered with nondescript small specks. Incubation lasts 17-20 days. Chicks stay in the nest for about two weeks, then leave it to start an independent life. Interestingly, red-headed manakins have a very developed family relationship, they feed together, forming flocks.

Red-headed manakin subspecies

The red-headed manakin forms three subspecies. One lives in Mexico, the Veracruz region, the second Pipra mentalis ignifera is found in Panama, the third in Colombia and Ecuador. There are intermediate hybrids.

With small and quick movements back and forth, the manakin creates the impression that he moves without the participation of the legs.

Conservation status of the red-headed manakin

The red-headed manakin is not a feared species. But in places where the area of ​​lowland forests is decreasing, the number of red-headed pipra naturally decreases.

This species has a rather large area of ​​distribution, so the number of birds does not approach the threshold value for vulnerable species. However, in nature, there is a tendency towards a decrease in the number, although this process is not proceeding at a rapid pace, and has not yet reached its maximum value. Therefore, the state of red-headed manakins in the environment is assessed as with the least threat to the species.

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