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Unbekannter kolibri.jpg
Gray-breasted Sabrewing Campylopterus largipennis
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Family: Trochilidae
Subfamily: Trochilinae
Genus: Campylopterus
Swainson, 1827

13, see text

The sabrewings are relatively large Neotropical hummingbirds in the genus Campylopterus. They are species of the understory and edges of forests, mostly in mountains, and often near streams; the female Sabrewing lays its two white eggs in a relatively large cup nest on a low horizontal branch, usually over a stream.

The sabrewings are very large for hummingbirds, typically 12–15 cm long; the black bill is strong and slightly decurved. The shafts of the male’s two outermost primary flight feathers are thickened, flattened and bent at an angle to give the distinctive feature which gives the sabrewings their English and scientific names (Greek καμπυλος kampylos, "bent", and πτερον pteron, "wing").

In some species, the male and female plumage is similar, in others, such as the violet sabrewing, the sexes look completely different. In several species, the three outer pairs of the tail feathers are broadly tipped white.

The food of sabrewings is nectar, taken mainly from undergrowth flowers such as Heliconia and bananas.


The sombre hummingbird and swallow-tailed hummingbird, formerly classified in Campylopterus, have been reclassified by most authorities into their own monotypic genera Aphantochroa and Eupetomena.

Image Name Common name Distribution
Campylopterus curvipennis Curve-winged sabrewing Mexico's Gulf slope, from Tamaulipas south to northernmost Oaxaca.
Campylopterus pampa, Belize.jpg Campylopterus pampa Wedge-tailed sabrewing Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico.
Campylopterus excellens Long-tailed sabrewing southern Mexico
Unbekannter kolibri.jpg Campylopterus largipennis Gray-breasted sabrewing Bahia and Minas Gerais in eastern Brazil.
Rufous Sabrewing JCB.jpg Campylopterus rufus Rufous sabrewing El Salvador, Guatemala, and Mexico
Fandanguero Morado, Violet Sabrewing, Campylopterus hemileucurus (11703081214).jpg Campylopterus hemileucurus Violet sabrewing southern Mexico and Central America as far south as Costa Rica and western Panama.
Campylopterus hyperythrus Rufous-breasted sabrewing Brazil, Guyana, and Venezuela.
Flickr - Rainbirder - White-tailed Sabrewing (Campylopterus ensipennis).jpg Campylopterus ensipennis White-tailed sabrewing northeastern Venezuela and Tobago
Campylopterus falcatus.jpg Campylopterus falcatus Lazuline sabrewing Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela
Campylopterus phainopeplus Santa Marta sabrewing Colombia.
Campylopterus villaviscensio 2.jpg Campylopterus villaviscensio Napo sabrewing Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru
Campylopterus calcirupicola Dry-forest sabrewing Brazil
Campylopterus duidae Buff-breasted sabrewing Brazil and Venezuela


  • A guide to the birds of Costa Rica by Stiles and Skutch ISBN 0-8014-9600-4
  • ffrench, Richard (1991). A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad and Tobago (2nd ed.). Comstock Publishing. ISBN 0-8014-9792-2.
  • Hilty, Steven L (2003). Birds of Venezuela. London: Christopher Helm. ISBN 0-7136-6418-5.