skip to content

Querula purpurata

Purple-throated Fruitcrow

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Cotingidae
  • Monotypic


Querula purpurata

Zapsurro, Colombia; 3 September 2012 © Juan D Ramirez Rpo

In a family rife with oddities and anomalies, the Purple-throated Fruitcrow by plumage alone does not jump out as being a particularly aberrant cotinga. The size and shape of a small crow with, in males, a deep purple throat, the Purple-throated Fruitcrow’s affinities within Cotingidae are uncertain. Placed in a monotypic genus, this fruitcrow is the only species of cotinga that is social, occurring in noisy groups of 3-8 birds and is the only member of its family to breed cooperatively. Cooperative breeding systems tend to be most common when resources are scarce or unpredictable such as in arid regions. In contrast, the Purple-throated Fruitcrow is found in humid forest, a habitat well known for abundant and predictable resources, particularly insects, on which the fruitcrow, despite its common name, feeds most heavily. Adding to its taxonomic ambiguity, the nests of the fruitcrow are conspicuous and made more so by the constant attendance of the social group, a very different strategy than other members of the family.

Help complete this species

There are many ways to contribute — we need species information, photographs, audio, video, translations, maps, distribution data, and bird sightings. There's a role for everyone!

Learn more

Recommended Citation

. 2010. Purple-throated Fruitcrow (Querula purpurata), Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online:

This map is based on maps available from the NatureServe InfoNatura website, for the distribution in Central America and/or Caribbean, and on a map provided by Robert S. Ridgely, for the South American distribution.

The data for the InforNatura 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.

  • Migration/Movement:Resident (nonmigratory)
  • Primary Habitat:Tropical lowland evergreen forest
  • Foraging Strata:Canopy
  • Foraging Behavior:Glean
  • Diet:Terrestrial invertebrates
  • Sociality:Solitary/Pairs
  • Mating System:Cooperative
  • Nest Form:Platform
  • Clutch: ? - ?
  • IUCN Status:Least Concern