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New World Neotropic Birds Photographed in Forest and Rural Garden Habitat

Images on this and associated webpages feature bird species I photographed in the New World neotropic region of Trinidad, mostly in the forest and informal garden surrounding the Asa Wright Nature Centre and Lodge, which is located in Trinidad’s northern mountain range.

The centre is an old cocoa, coffee, citrus plantation that has been partly reclaimed by secondary forest and is now operated as a Nature Reserve. Most of the featured bird species can also be found in many other habitats, such as savanna, shrubland, grassland, inland wetland, urban, etcetera, while others are exclusively found in one, such as forest.

I’ve organised these webpages and galleries into three groups: (a) non-passerine hummingbirds, (b) oscine and suboscine passerines, (c) and non-passerines. A brief introduction to oscines, suboscines, passerines and non-passerines is given on my birds (Aves) page.


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Oscine Passerines

Tanagers and their Allies

I photographed eight species of tanager and their allies, two tanager species are featured in the image gallery and all eight feature on the oscine passerines webpage.

The two featured images are of two favourite dimorphic tanager species, from the Thraupidae family, the purple honeycreeper and the silver-beaked tanager. The female purple honeycreeper has green legs, cinnamon checks and throat with a blue moustachial stripe, green and blue streaked yellowish-buff underparts which contrast significantly with the male that is purple-blue with black wings and yellow legs. The male silver-beaked tanager is crimson black with deeper crimson throat and beast, the upper mandible is black, the lower silver while the female is much duller with brownish upperparts and reddish brown underparts and black beak.

Blackbirds, Mockingbirds and Thrushes

This gallery features a couple of New World blackbird species from the five I photographed from the Icteridae family. The Giant Cowbird at 28 cm to 35 cm long is the largest passerine in the New World I photographed it at Trinidad’s La Vaga Estate lakes. The Crested Oropendola photographed at the Asa Wright Centre where it nests close to the house and is common across northern South America.

Euphonia and Swallows

This galley features a male violaceous euphonia and the blue and white swallow, which I photographed at La Vaga Estate lakes; it winters in Trinidad.

Image Highlights from the oscines in the Passeriformes order

Thraupidae (Tanagers) family

Male and Female Silver-beaked Tanager (Ramphocelus carbo)

Male and Female Purple Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes caeruleus)

Icteridae (New World Blackbirds) family

Giant Cowbird (Molothrus oryzivorus)

Crested Oropendola (Psarocolius decumanus)

Fringillidae (Euphonia) family

Violaceous euphonia (Euphonia violacea)

Hirundinidae (Swallows) family

Blue-and-white Swallow (Notiochelidon cyanoleuca) synonym is Pygochelidon cyanoleuca

Suboscines and Forest Non-Passerines

Antbirds and Cotingas (Suboscine Passeriformes)

Birds in this section are from the suboscine in the Passeriformes order and feature two images from five different bird families I photographed. This group of birds can be found in a forest habitat.  

Oilbird (Caprimulgiformes) and cuckoos (Cuculiformes)

The last gallery in my New World section feature a couple of images from non-passerines. The smooth billed ani, I photographed in trees near the Orange Valley mudflats, and the Oilbird in caves at the Asa Aright Nature Centre.

Image Highlights of suboscine Passeriformes, Caprimulgiformes and Cuculiformes orders

Suboscines Passeriformes order

Thamnophilidae (Antbirds) family

Barred Antshrike (Thamnophilus doliatus)

Suboscines Passeriformes order, Cotingidae (Cotingas) family

Bearded Bellbird (Procnias averano)

Caprimulgiformes order, Steatornithidae (Oilbird) family

Oilbird (Steatornis caripensis)

Cuculiformes order, Cuculidae (Cuckoo) family

Smooth-billed Ani (Crotophaga ani)

Bird taxonomy

Seems to be a moving feast and a coherent approach to identification and classification is difficult. The resources I use for include several authoritative websites and databases; these as referenced in taxonomic classification section on my wildlife web page.

Female Silver-beaked Tanager (Ramphocelus carbo), Trinidad, 2015 Male Purple Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes caeruleus), Trinidad, 2015 Female Purple Honeycreeper (Cyanerpes caeruleus), Trinidad, 2015 Male Silver-beaked Tanager (Ramphocelus carbo), Trinidad, 2015 Male Violaceous Euphonia (Euphonia violacea), Trinidad, 2015 Crested Oropendola (Psarocolius decumanus), Trinidad, 2015 Giant Cowbird (Molothrus oryzivorus), Trinidad, 2015 Blue-and-white Swallow (Notiochelidon cyanoleuca) synonym (Pygochelidon cyanoleuca), Trinidad, 2015 Barred Antshrike (Thamnophilus doliatus), Trinidad, 2015 Bearded Bellbird (Procnias averano), Trinidad, 2015 Oilbird (Steatornis caripensis), Trinidad, 2015 Smooth-billed Ani (Crotophaga ani), Trinidad, 2015


Male Violaceous Euphonia (Euphonia violacea), Trinidad, 2015 Bearded Bellbird (Procnias averano), Trinidad, 2015