Beautiful Birds of Belize Blog – Post #24
By Jim Gain
- Scientific Name: Amblycercus holosericeus
- Name in Spanish (Mexico): Cacique Pico Claro
- Name in Mayan: Wa’ay ko’ot
- ABA 4-Letter Bird Code: YBIC
- Family: Icteridae – Orioles and Allies
- Order: Passeriformes – Perching Birds
About this Species
The Yellow-billed Cacique (Amblycercus holosericeus) is a medium-sized blackbird species that can be found throughout Central America, including Belize. The Yellow-billed Cacique is all black and has an ivory white bill that almost shines in the dark understory habitats preferred by this species.
Heard much more often than seen, as pairs keep in touch with ‘question and answer calling.’ Creeps methodically in vines and tangles, and most frequently seen as it flies low across a trail or quiet road, usually with one member of the pair following shortly after the other. Note the pale ivory-yellow bill and staring yellow eyes, often striking even with a quick flight view.
In terms of diet, Yellow-billed Caciques are omnivorous and feed on a variety of insects, fruits, and nectar. They are important pollinators for many plant species in their range, and their foraging habits also help to control insect populations. While they are not currently considered to be threatened, habitat loss and fragmentation are potential threats to their populations, particularly in areas where forested habitats are being converted for agriculture or other human uses.
Overall, the Yellow-billed Cacique is an ecologically important and visually striking bird species that can be readily observed in Belize and other parts of Central America.
>> Next Post on Tuesday, 5/16/2023 – Eye-ringed Flatbill
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