Blue-crowned motmot

Latin Name
Momotus momota




Named for the bright band atop its head, the blue-crowned motmot has a black face with green wings and long tail feathers.The birds' tail feathers are prone to losing barbs near the end, produce a bare shaft ending in a racquet-shaped tip. The species can reach 16 inches in length.



The species is found in Central and South America, from Mexico to northern Argentina.


Blue-crowned motmots are considered a species of least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Lincoln Park Zoo participates in the Blue-Crowned Motmot Species Survival Plan®, a shared management effort by zoos throughout the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.


Forests and woodlands


Insects--particularly beetles--make up the majority of the species’ diet, although the birds will also feed on fruit. Paired blue-crowned motmots often separate during the day to forage.

Life History

Blue-crowned motmots lay eggs in burrows dug in the soil. The males and females both incubate the eggs. The young emerge from the burrow approximately a month after hatching.

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