Saw-billed Hermit (Ramphodon naevius)
Saw-billed  Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, November 2006 - click for larger image Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil

The Saw-billed Hermit used to be considered a Brazilian endemic found in the coastal forest of south-east Brazil up to about 500 metres but it has been seen in the extreme north of Argentina.

There is a distribution map and recordings on xeno-canto .

Largely because of habitat loss it is considered Near threatened by Birdlife International.

It is one of the largest and heaviest of hummingbirds weighing in at about 10 grams.

Saw-billed  Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, April 2001 - click for larger image You can get a feel for its relative size in the second photo. This bird had flown into the house and had to be caught and released outside. He sat very still for a couple of seconds (while he had his photo taken) before flying off.

The name "saw-billed" comes from tiny serrations on the bill.

Saw-billed  Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, November 2006 - click for larger image The markings are quite striking with buffy supercilium, an orange throat with a dark stripe down the middle, a pale lower mandible, a heavily streaked breast and a roundish tail with buffy-brown tips.

You are supposed to be able to tell the female by the shorter, slightly decurved bill without the small hooked tip of the male. The male is also more strongly marked below. On this basis I would say that photos 3, 4 and 5 are of a male while photos 1 and 6 are of a female.

Hermits are "trap-line feeders" which means that they visit plants for nectar along a fairly long route as opposed to most other hummingbirds who are highly territorial and will vigorously defend the nectar sources in its patch.

Saw-billed  Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, November 2006 - click for larger image

There is an illustration in HBW, Volume 5, Page 536.

Saw-billed  Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, November 2006 - click for larger image
Female  Saw-billed Hermit, Ubatuba, São Paulo, Brazil, August 2004 - click for larger image
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