Antillean Mango

Antillean Mango, Tony Pe

At a Glance

  • Scientific Name: Anthracothorax dominicus
  • Population: Unknown; considered common
  • Trend:  Unknown
  • Habitat: Subtropical or tropical lowland forests, savannas, and edges in the West Indies
Antillean Mango, Tony Pe

Antillean Mango map, NatureServeWhen it comes to birds, “mango” refers to hummingbirds in the genus Anthracothorax. All seven mango species are large as hummingbirds go, with long, slightly downcurved bills and rounded tails.

The Antillean Mango is found only in the West Indies, where it's common on the island of Hispaniola shared by Haiti and the Dominican Republic (DR). Although much remains unknown, it's likely that the bird shares habitat with the Bay-breasted Cuckoo and Hispaniolan Trogon, endemic species that find refuge in the Sierra de Bahoruco reserve in the DR, supported by ABC.

Life of the Antillean Mango

Like other hummingbird species, including the Snowcap, Ruby Topaz, and Mangrove Hummingbird, Antillean Mangos are solitary in all aspects of life other than breeding. While courting, males sing from high perches and display by flying U-shaped patterns in front of prospective mate. Females choose the nest site, build the nest, and raise the chicks.

The nest—a cup-shaped structure woven from soft plant fibers—is lined with animal hair and feather down, then strengthened with spider webs and other sticky material. This webbing gives the nest an elastic quality, which allows it to expand as the chicks grow.

The Antillean Mango feeds on chiefly on nectar, supplemented by insects and other invertebrates. While feeding, these mangos frequently fan out their tails.

Widespread but Not Well-Known

Although its population trend has not been quantified, the Antillean Mango is considered widespread and fairly common. Since it can use semi-open and edge habitats, this species may not be as affected by deforestation as many other bird species, at least in the short term.

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Antillean Mango populations in the Virgin Islands and eastern Puerto Rico have declined in recent years and have been eliminated in some places. This change is attributed at least in part to competition with the Green-throated Carib, another hummingbird whose range appears to be expanding in those places.

Antillean Mango female feeding chick, Tony Pe

Antillean Mango female feeding chick, Tony Pe

The Birds of Sierra Bahoruco

In addition to the Antillean Mango, Sierra de Bahoruco National Park and the Loma Charco Azul Biological Reserve in western Dominican Republic are home to more than 30 bird species found nowhere else, including Hispaniolan Amazon Parrot, La Selle Thrush, Hispaniolan Crossbill, Least Paraque, and White-fronted Quail Dove.

Many migratory species also call this place home in the winter, from Bicknell's Thrush and Swainson's Warbler to Prairie Warbler and Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

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