Reproductive biology

Manakins do not form a lasting pair-bond, but are polygamous, using a leh (courtship area) where females choose and mate with a male. After copulation, the females fly off alone to build the nests, incubate the eggs, and raise the young. The nest is constructed using woven fibers and grasses to form a tiny hammock in small trees or ferns usually over water. Incubation lasts from 17-21 days, with short fledging times of 13-15 days for one to two young.

Manakin courtship display. (Illustration by Brian Cressman)

A crimson-hooded manakin (Pipra aureola) spreads its wings. (Photo by C.H. Greenewalt/VIREO. Reproduced by permission.)

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