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Ensifera ensifera

Sword-billed Hummingbird

  • Order: Apodiformes
  • Family: Trochilidae


Ensifera ensifera

Pichincha, Ecuador; 23 February 2007 © Andrew S. Johnson

The Sword-billed Hummingbird is a charismatic species from Andean South America.  It is found from Venezuela and Colombia in the north to Bolivia in the south.  The species belongs to a monotypic genus, Ensifera, and is quite different from all other hummingbirds; metallic green and bronzed overall, with a black bill that is slightly upcurved and longer than the body length.  This is the only bird species with a bill length that exceeds the body length.  When seen perched, the species usually holds its bill quite upright, presumably because of balance issues stemming from this long and relatively heavy structure. 

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Recommended Citation

. 2010. Sword-billed Hummingbird (Ensifera ensifera), Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online:

This map is based on the maps available from the NatureServe InfoNatura website. The data for these maps are provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE.

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  • Primary Habitat:Montane evergreen forest
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  • IUCN Status:Least Concern