Lesson's Motmot Momotus lessonii



  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding
Distribution of the Lesson's Motmot
eBird range map for Lesson's Motmot

Generated from eBird observations (Year-Round, 1900-present)

Distribution in the Americas

Occurs on the Caribbean slope from northeastern Mexico (north to Nuevo León and Tamaulipas) south to Costa Rica, although very local on the Caribbean slope of Costa Rica; and on the Pacific slope from southwestern Mexico (Chiapas) south to western Panama, east to the Azuero Peninsula.

Resident. Occurs from the lowlands up to 1600 m in Mexico (Howell and Webb 1995), and to 2150 m in southwestern Costa Rica (although only to 1500 m in northwestern Costa Rica (Stiles and Skutch 1989).

Distribution outside the Americas

Endemic to the Americas.


Inhabits a range of habitats, including tropical lowland evergreen forest, "drier woodland, wooded ravines, shady second growth, hedgerows, shady gardens ... and coffee plantations (Stiles and Skutch 1989).

Orejuela (1980) investigated the ecological relationships of Blue-crowned and Turquoise-browed (Eumomota superciliosa) motmots where the two species are sympatric in Campeche, southern Mexico. Densities of Turquoise-browed Motmots were highest in areas with a low, open canopy and a dense understory (with many shrubs and vines); in contrast, higher densities of Blue-crowned Motmot were found in sites with a tall, dense canopy and an open understory.

Historical changes

None reported.

Fossil history

None reported.

Recommended Citation

Lesson's Motmot (Momotus lessonii), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: https://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/Species-Account/nb/species/bucmot2