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 (144)

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

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 sight to see many more fantastic shots, a “©©” copyright symbol indicates a photo from Creative Commons and ©WikiC is a Creative Commons photo from Wikipedia. “†” indicates the bird is extinct. *LLABS* means it is on Our Life List of All Birds Seen. ** Need Photo ** If you can help with a link to a needed photo, please leave a comment.

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
Nikhil Devasar’s Gallery-II
Peter Ericsson’s Gallery
Tom Tarrant’s Aveceda & Videographer

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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 Birds:

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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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