Birds of Paradise
Manucodia (old Javanese (Malay) Manuk dewata = birds of the gods); chalybatus (Latin, steely); common name refers to structure of feathers on back of neck.
Sexually monomorphic. Adult male, 25 cm long; female, 33 cm. Head, neck and nape blue-black with blue-green iridescent V-shapes on chin, throat, neck and nape; upperparts dark blue-black, lower throat, neck and upper breast have crinkled texture produced by a fringed edging to feathers. Adult females somewhat more green-blue than purple.
Mainly fruits, also small animals and insects.
Hill and lower montane forests on mainland, lowland forests on Misool Island; 0-1700 m, mainly 500-600 m.
Monogamous. Displays observed April-September. Male displays on tree branches, expanding breast and mantle feathers while stretching neck and head forward with each display call; chases female through foliage and across numerous perches.
Breeding occurs at least July-September and in January over species’ range. Incubation and nestling details unknown; presumed that both sexes attend young. No hybridisation is known.
Status and conservation
Not threatened; fairly common but secretive.
New Guinea: patchily throughout mainland, Misool Island.
Michael Hugill , Online Producer