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Masked flowerpiercer        Images © Mark A. Chappell

Flowerpiercers are 'cheats':   they are nectar drinkers like hummingbirds and honeycreepers, but instead of performing a service to the plant by transferring pollen, they bite holes at the base of the flower with their hooked bills and steal the nectar.   There are a number of species in the Neotropics; this one is found in Andean cloud forests.   I photographed them near the Wayqecha Research Station, at about 3000 m elevation on the Manu Road in southeastern Peru (the black-throated flowerpiercer is shown on another page).

  • Canon 7D; 500 mm f4 IS lens + 1.4X converter, extension tubes, electronic flash (2012, 2016)