Orange-breasted Trogon copulating

posted in: Courtship-Mating | 1

Adrian Lim a.k.a. wmw998 photographed a pair of Orange-breasted Trogon (Harpactes oreskios) in February 2009 in Malaysia. The birds were caught in the act of copulation.

Knowledge of the breeding habits of trogons is limited. They are cavity nesters, using decaying trunks or stumps of trees or holes in nests of social insects, especially termite mounds. They excavate the cavities, sometimes taking several months to complete.

Collar (2001) gives an account of a pair of courting Elegant Trogons (Trogon elegans) thus: “…copulation takes the form of the male flying initially to within 3-5 m of the female, giving the ‘cocococo…’ courtship song, and then flying directly to her, hovering above her two seconds, taking her nape in his bill, and landing on her back while she lifts her tail up, the male then swings his tail smoothly from side to side for cloacal contact, then pumps it up and down beneath the female’s while fluttering his wings.”

Collar, N. J., 2001. Family Trogonidae (Trogons). In: del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & J. Sargatal (eds.) (2001). Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 6. Mousebirds to Hornbills. Lynx Editions, Barcelona. Pp. 80-127.

This post is a cooperative effort between and BESG to bring the study of bird behaviour through photography to a wider audience.

  1. Joanna López

    This is such a great site for those who love birds, and are interested on their protection, and their habitats. I am a senior college biology student. I want to ask anyone for some records of soth american trogons songs, for my research. THANKS.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.