Tag Archives: Discosura letitiae

Discosura letitiae (Bourcier &. Mulsant)

Letitia’s Thorntail (Discosura letitiae 

Letitia’s Thorntail, also known as Coppery Thorntail, was described in 1852, it is known only by two old male specimens (according to other sources by three specimens).

The species was for some time believed to represent a hybrid or a aberration of another species, the Raquet-tailed Coquette (Discosura longicaudus Gmelin) but was shown in a study in 1999 to be a valid species.

The origin of the Coppery Thorntail is not known, however, it is thought to have inhabited a region in northern Bolivia that even today has not been properly surveyed ornithologically.

Letitia’s Thorntail might be extinct, but there is a slight chance that it still survives in very small numbers. 


Depiction from: ‘John Gould: A monograph of the Trochilidae, or family of humming-birds. London: printed by Taylor and Francis 1849-1861’

(public domain)


edited: 30.10.2020