Nectariniidae – Sunbirds

Purple-rumped Sunbird (Leptocoma zeylonica) by TAJA

Purple-rumped Sunbird (Leptocoma zeylonica) by TAJA

Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, “Come, gather for the great supper of God, (Revelation 19:17 ESV)

CLASS – AVES, Order – PASSERIFORMES, Family – Nectariniidae – Sunbirds

Latest I.O.C. Version
Species (145)

Ruby-cheeked Sunbird (Chalcoparia singalensis)
Fraser’s Sunbird (Deleornis fraseri)
Grey-headed Sunbird (Deleornis axillaris)
Plain-backed Sunbird (Anthreptes reichenowi)
Anchieta’s Sunbird (Anthreptes anchietae)
Plain Sunbird (Anthreptes simplex)
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis)
Grey-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes griseigularis)
Red-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes rhodolaemus)
Mangrove Sunbird (Anthreptes gabonicus)
Western Violet-backed Sunbird (Anthreptes longuemarei)
Eastern Violet-backed Sunbird (Anthreptes orientalis)
Uluguru Violet-backed Sunbird (Anthreptes neglectus)
Violet-tailed Sunbird (Anthreptes aurantius)
Little Green Sunbird (Anthreptes seimundi)
Grey-chinned Sunbird (Anthreptes rectirostris)
Banded Green Sunbird (Anthreptes rubritorques)
Collared Sunbird (Hedydipna collaris)
Pygmy Sunbird (Hedydipna platura)
Nile Valley Sunbird (Hedydipna metallica)
Amani Sunbird (Hedydipna pallidigaster)
Reichenbach’s Sunbird (Anabathmis reichenbachii)
Principe Sunbird (Anabathmis hartlaubii)
Newton’s Sunbird (Anabathmis newtonii)
Giant Sunbird (Dreptes thomensis)
Orange-breasted Sunbird (Anthobaphes violacea)
Green-headed Sunbird (Cyanomitra verticalis)
Bannerman’s Sunbird (Cyanomitra bannermani)
Blue-throated Brown Sunbird (Cyanomitra cyanolaema)
Cameroon Sunbird (Cyanomitra oritis)
Blue-headed Sunbird (Cyanomitra alinae)
Olive Sunbird (Cyanomitra olivacea)
Grey Sunbird (Cyanomitra veroxii)
Buff-throated Sunbird (Chalcomitra adelberti)
Carmelite Sunbird (Chalcomitra fuliginosa)
Green-throated Sunbird (Chalcomitra rubescens)
Amethyst Sunbird (Chalcomitra amethystina)
Scarlet-chested Sunbird (Chalcomitra senegalensis)
Hunter’s Sunbird (Chalcomitra hunteri)
Socotra Sunbird (Chalcomitra balfouri)
Purple-rumped Sunbird (Leptocoma zeylonica)
Crimson-backed Sunbird (Leptocoma minima)
Purple-throated Sunbird (Leptocoma sperata)
Van Hasselt’s Sunbird (Leptocoma brasiliana)
Black Sunbird (Leptocoma aspasia)
Copper-throated Sunbird (Leptocoma calcostetha)
Bocage’s Sunbird (Nectarinia bocagii)
Purple-breasted Sunbird (Nectarinia purpureiventris)
Tacazze Sunbird (Nectarinia tacazze)
Bronzy Sunbird (Nectarinia kilimensis)
Malachite Sunbird (Nectarinia famosa)
Scarlet-tufted Sunbird (Nectarinia johnstoni)
Golden-winged Sunbird (Drepanorhynchus reichenowi)
Olive-bellied Sunbird (Cinnyris chloropygius)
Tiny Sunbird (Cinnyris minullus)
Eastern Miombo Sunbird (Cinnyris manoensis)
Western Miombo Sunbird (Cinnyris gertrudis)
Southern Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris chalybeus)
Neergaard’s Sunbird (Cinnyris neergaardi)
Rwenzori Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris stuhlmanni)
Whyte’s Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris whytei)
Prigogine’s Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris prigoginei)
Ludwig’s Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris ludovicensis)
Northern Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris reichenowi)
Greater Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris afer)
Regal Sunbird (Cinnyris regius)
Rockefeller’s Sunbird (Cinnyris rockefelleri)
Eastern Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris mediocris)
Usambara Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris usambaricus)
Forest Double-collared Sunbird (Cinnyris fuelleborni)
Moreau’s Sunbird (Cinnyris moreaui)
Loveridge’s Sunbird (Cinnyris loveridgei)
Beautiful Sunbird (Cinnyris pulchellus)
Marico Sunbird (Cinnyris mariquensis)
Shelley’s Sunbird (Cinnyris shelleyi)
Hofmann’s Sunbird (Cinnyris hofmanni)
Congo Sunbird (Cinnyris congensis)
Red-chested Sunbird (Cinnyris erythrocercus)
Black-bellied Sunbird (Cinnyris nectarinioides)
Purple-banded Sunbird (Cinnyris bifasciatus)
Tsavo Sunbird (Cinnyris tsavoensis)
Violet-breasted Sunbird (Cinnyris chalcomelas)
Pemba Sunbird (Cinnyris pembae)
Orange-tufted Sunbird (Cinnyris bouvieri)
Palestine Sunbird (Cinnyris osea)
Shining Sunbird (Cinnyris habessinicus)
Splendid Sunbird (Cinnyris coccinigastrus)
Johanna’s Sunbird (Cinnyris johannae)
Superb Sunbird (Cinnyris superbus)
Rufous-winged Sunbird (Cinnyris rufipennis)
Oustalet’s Sunbird (Cinnyris oustaleti)
White-bellied Sunbird (Cinnyris talatala)
Variable Sunbird (Cinnyris venustus)
Dusky Sunbird (Cinnyris fuscus)
Ursula’s Sunbird (Cinnyris ursulae)
Bates’s Sunbird (Cinnyris batesi)
Copper Sunbird (Cinnyris cupreus)
Purple Sunbird (Cinnyris asiaticus)
Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis)
Apricot-breasted Sunbird (Cinnyris buettikoferi)
Flame-breasted Sunbird (Cinnyris solaris)
Souimanga Sunbird (Cinnyris sovimanga)
Abbott’s Sunbird (Cinnyris abbotti)
Malagasy Green Sunbird (Cinnyris notatus)
Seychelles Sunbird (Cinnyris dussumieri)
Humblot’s Sunbird (Cinnyris humbloti)
Anjouan Sunbird (Cinnyris comorensis)
Mayotte Sunbird (Cinnyris coquerellii)
Loten’s Sunbird (Cinnyris lotenius)
Grey-hooded Sunbird (Aethopyga primigenia)
Apo Sunbird (Aethopyga boltoni)
Lina’s Sunbird (Aethopyga linaraborae)
Flaming Sunbird (Aethopyga flagrans)
Maroon-naped Sunbird (Aethopyga guimarasensis)
Metallic-winged Sunbird (Aethopyga pulcherrima)
Luzon Sunbird (Aethopyga jefferyi)
Bohol Sunbird (Aethopyga decorosa)
Elegant Sunbird (Aethopyga duyvenbodei)
Lovely Sunbird (Aethopyga shelleyi)
Handsome Sunbird (Aethopyga bella)
Mrs. Gould’s Sunbird (Aethopyga gouldiae)
Green-tailed Sunbird (Aethopyga nipalensis)
White-flanked Sunbird (Aethopyga eximia)
Fork-tailed Sunbird (Aethopyga christinae)
Black-throated Sunbird (Aethopyga saturata)
Crimson Sunbird (Aethopyga siparaja)
Magnificent Sunbird (Aethopyga magnifica)
Vigors’s Sunbird (Aethopyga vigorsii)
Javan Sunbird (Aethopyga mystacalis)
Temminck’s Sunbird (Aethopyga temminckii)
Fire-tailed Sunbird (Aethopyga ignicauda)
Purple-naped Sunbird (Kurochkinegramma hypogrammicum)
Little Spiderhunter (Arachnothera longirostra)
Orange-tufted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flammifera)
Pale Spiderhunter (Arachnothera dilutior)
Thick-billed Spiderhunter (Arachnothera crassirostris)
Long-billed Spiderhunter (Arachnothera robusta)
Spectacled Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flavigaster)
Yellow-eared Spiderhunter (Arachnothera chrysogenys)
Naked-faced Spiderhunter (Arachnothera clarae)
Grey-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera modesta)
Streaky-breasted Spiderhunter (Arachnothera affinis)
Bornean Spiderhunter (Arachnothera everetti)
Streaked Spiderhunter (Arachnothera magna)
Whitehead’s Spiderhunter (Arachnothera juliae)

On the photos or slides, a “by” indicates one of the photographers or videographers, who have given their permission, with links on our sidebar. Please visit their site to see many more fantastic shots, a “©©” copyright symbol indicates a photo from Creative Commons and ©WikiC is a Creative Commons photo from Wikipedia.

Photographers or Videographers used on this page from our sidebar, Photography, are:
Bob & Nan’s Gallery
Clement Francis Bird Photography
Dave’s BirdingPix
Ian Montgomery’s Birdway
MAMuin’s Picasa Gallery
Nikhil Devasar’s Gallery
Peter Ericsson’s Gallery
Tom Tarrant’s Aveceda & Videographer

Back to Family Page – CLICK HERE

Articles Mentioning Birds From This Family:

Other Websites that have photos of this Family:

The sunbirds and spiderhunters make up a family, Nectariniidae, of very small passerine birds. The family is distributed throughout Africa, the Indian Subcontinent, Southeast Asia and just reaches northern Australia. Most sunbirds feed largely on nectar, but also take insects and spiders, especially when feeding young. Flower tubes that bar access to nectar because of their shape, are simply punctured at the base near the nectaries. Fruit is also part of the diet of some species. Their flight is fast and direct on their short wings.

The sunbirds have counterparts in two very distantly related groups: the hummingbirds of the Americas and the honeyeaters of Australia. Some sunbird species can take nectar by hovering like a hummingbird, but usually perch to feed.

The family ranges in size from the 5-gram Black-bellied Sunbird to the Spectacled Spiderhunter, at about 45 grams. Like the hummingbirds, sunbirds are strongly sexually dimorphic, with the males usually brilliantly plumaged in iridescent colours. In addition to this the tails of many species are longer in the males, and overall the males are larger. Sunbirds have long thin down-curved bills and brush-tipped tubular tongues, both assist in  their nectar feeding.

The spiderhunters, of the genus Arachnothera, are distinct in appearance from the other members of the family. They are typically larger than the other sunbirds, with drab brown plumage that is the same for both sexes and long down-curved beaks.

In metabolic behaviour similar to that of Andes hummingbirds, species of sunbirds that live at high altitudes or latitudes will enter torpor while roosting at night, lowering their body temperature and entering a state of low activity and responsiveness. (Wikipedia with editing)

Some of the Family – Photos are Alphabetical down the columns:


2 thoughts on “Nectariniidae – Sunbirds

  1. How many different ways can you paint a bird (or a fish or a flower or…). Our God’s designs are truly magnificent.

    If you are looking for any photos from the Daintree region in Australia, try this site:

    We have stayed there and the proprietors are avid photographers and birdwatchers. Got some fabulous shots, including some of the best I’ve seen of the Yellow-bellied Sunbird. There is a list at the bottom of that page of the species they have identified.


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