The Montezuma oropendola (Psarocolius montezuma) is a New World tropical icterid bird. It is a resident breeder in the Caribbean coastal lowlands from southeastern Mexico to central Panama, but is absent from El Salvador and southern Guatemala. It also occurs on the Pacific slope of Nicaragua and Honduras and northwestern Costa Rica. It is among the oropendola species sometimes separated in the genus Gymnostinops. The English and scientific names of this species commemorate the Aztec emperor Moctezuma II.

The sexes are very different in size; the male is 50 cm (20 in) long and weighs 520 g (18 oz); the smaller female is 38 cm (15 in) long and weighs 230 g (8.1 oz).

Adult males are mainly chestnut with a blackish head and rump, and a tail which is bright yellow apart from two dark central feathers. There is a bare blue cheek patch and a pink wattle, the iris is brown, and the long bill is black at the base with a red tip. Females are similar, but smaller than males with a smaller wattle. Young birds are duller than adults and have a paler and less demarcated bill. No subspecies are currently recognized.

The "unforgettable" song of the male Montezuma oropendola is given during the bowing display, and consists of a conversational bubbling followed by loud gurgles, tic-tic-glik-glak-GLUUuuuuu. Both sexes have loud cack and crrrk calls.

Although the chestnut-headed oropendola shares much of this species's range, it is smaller, mainly black with a chestnut head (instead of mainly chestnut with a blackish head), and lacks coloured facial patches, so the two oropendolas are unlikely to be confused.



The Montezuma oropendola is a quite common bird in parts of its range, often seen in small or larger flocks foraging in trees for small vertebrates, large insects, nectar, and fruit, including bananas, Cecropia spikes, gumbo-limbo (Bursera simaruba) and Trophis racemosa (Moraceae). Outside the breeding season, this species is quite mobile, with some seasonal movements.

The Montezuma oropendola inhabits forest canopy, edges and old plantations. It is a colonial breeder which builds a hanging woven nest of fibres and vines, 60–180 cm (24–71 in) long, high in a tree. Each colony has a dominant male, which mates with most of the females following an elaborate bowing display. The female lays two dark-spotted white or buff eggs which hatch in 15 days; the young fledge in 30. There are typically about 30 nests in a colony, but up to 172 have been recorded.
Montezuma Oropendola
Date Location Count
2021-06-26 05:49Hill Bank Field Station2
2021-07-22 06:07Tropical Education Center & Belize Zoo Jungle Lodge1
2021-06-26 06:10Sylvester Village1
2021-07-16 06:07Pook's Hill Lodge1
2021-06-29 06:40PN Tikal--antigua pista de aterrizaje26
2021-07-01 08:37PN Tikal--sitio arqueológico (carretera a Uaxactún)1
2021-07-01 17:23La Villa de Soledad B&B1
2021-07-22 09:46BFREE6
2021-07-03 08:24PN Pico Bonito--Lodge at Pico Bonito3
2021-06-30 05:58Biotopo Protegido Cerro Cahuí1
2021-07-10 07:00PN Laguna del Tigre--Estación Biológica Las Guacamayas12
2021-07-18 05:30PN Laguna del Tigre--mirador EBG (solo listas sin desplazamiento)2
2021-07-03 08:48PN Laguna del Tigre--camino EBG a playa de acceso Waka' Perú1
2021-07-02 08:36PN Laguna del Tigre--Rio San Pedro (río abajo del Sacluc)1
2021-07-18 09:10Laguna de Alvarado--Canal de Chamber1
2021-07-17 10:51Cattle Landing--waterfront3
2021-07-25 05:56The Farm Inn6
2021-07-11 06:54RVS La Muralla--Sendero El Pizote15
2021-07-10 14:52RVS La Muralla--Sendero Monte Escondido15
2021-07-10 08:12RVS La Muralla--Calle El Díctamo a Centro de Visitantes4
2021-07-12 05:32RVS La Muralla--Centro de Visitantes16
2021-07-18 07:23Sendero El Colibrí y Río Masca1
2021-07-05 09:00PN Cuyamel--Humedales y Barra de Río Motagua2
2021-07-02 05:29Residencial Santa Mónica (Acceso Restringido)1
2021-07-24 06:24Residencial Campisa (Acceso Restringido)2
2021-07-10 11:14Finca Villa Julia (Acceso Restringido)
2021-07-09 11:15Reserva Privada Ensenada Verde3
2021-07-09 08:06Reserva Protectora de Manantiales Cerro San Gil--sendero Las Escobas1
2021-07-20 06:44Monumentos Naturales Yaxchilán--Zona Arqueológica Yaxchilán1
2021-07-17 16:34Ecoparque Aluxes1
2021-06-29 08:24Reserva Protectora de Manantiales Cerro San Gil--Carboneras2
2021-07-19 16:36PN Palenque2
2021-07-07 10:51Area de Protección de Flora y Fauna Metzabok1
2021-07-04 07:00Finca La Trinidad (acceso Restringido)
2021-07-04 16:51Finca Don Chema3
2021-07-03 06:03Reserva Natural Privada Luna del Puente10
2021-07-04 08:26Lago de Yojoa--Parque Los Naranjos5
2021-07-11 08:59PN Azul Meámbar--PANACAM Lodge2
2021-07-23 10:55PN Azul Meámbar--Sendero La Naturaleza (zona de amortiguamiento)1
2021-07-17 08:41Lago de Yojoa--Sector La Ensenada4
2021-07-11 15:27Finca Las Palmas7
2021-07-11 07:54Pichucalco--Ribera El Cerro5
2021-06-27 07:17Finca Integral El Manzanal5
2021-06-27 15:30Sitio Arqueológico Ruinas de Copán4
2021-07-09 07:58Reserva de la Biosfera El Cielo--Camino a Alta Cima1
2021-06-30 14:30Estación de Biología Tropical Los Tuxtlas30
2021-07-13 09:57Reserva de la Biosfera Los Tuxtlas--Laguna Sontecomapan3
2021-07-14 07:09Cascadas Las Pavitas2
2021-06-30 07:35Reserva de la Biosfera Los Tuxtlas--Camino Ruiz Cortines-Miguel Hidalgo1
2021-07-04 09:23Arroyo de Caballos2
2021-06-27 06:35Camino del Ejido Juárez (desvío km 21 +600 carretera Tuxtla-Chicoasén)22
2021-06-30 12:17Hotel La Finca1
2021-07-18 06:45Camino a Ejido Armando Zebadua3
2021-07-07 15:38selva negra2
2021-07-12 17:33Río Atliyac--Paso De Ovejas1
2021-07-09 17:11Río Atliyac--Poza Los Tepetates1
2021-07-18 07:02Plan de Guinea3
2021-07-11 07:30Laguna del Castillo2
2021-07-22 08:00Chavarrillo (pueblo)4
2021-07-18 08:45Cerro de Tepeapulco4
2021-07-04 07:51Chavarillo--Río el Vado3
2021-07-10 09:51Instituto de Ecología, A.C.2
2021-07-24 07:00Cascada de Texolo5
2021-07-18 08:26San Rafael Piña (pueblo)1
2021-06-27 14:00Casa Verde Hotel1
2021-07-12 07:44Santa Maria Jacatepec--Sumichrast's Wren Area3
2021-07-16 16:09Laguna de Apoyo--Estación Biológica5
2021-07-02 08:55Camino Plan de las Flores1
2021-07-07 07:43Laguna de Apoyo-Sector Diria1
2021-07-14 14:43Medio Queso wetland1
2021-07-14 15:25Caño Negro--Río Frío5
2021-07-01 14:20Los Guatuzos Centro Ecológico y Río Papaturro12
2021-07-13 17:42Caño Negro Hotel de Campo Eco Lodge6
2021-07-23 10:36Refugio mixto Caño Negro13
2021-06-29 07:17Cerro Tortuguero6
2021-07-13 13:50Tortuguero--Laguna Lodge
2021-07-14 13:30Rio San Carlos boat tour (Boca Tapada area)2
2021-07-19 15:35Tortugero--Mawamba Jungle Lodge3
2021-07-20 08:59Aninga Lodge8
2021-06-25 15:07Tortuguero--Evergreen Lodge4
2021-07-20 14:48Tortuguero3
2021-07-06 06:13Tortuguero--Alrededores 4 Esquinas1
2021-07-21 05:15Laguna Lagarto Lodge5
2021-07-14 09:00El Ranario (Adolfo's feeders)2
2021-07-11 09:31Maquenque Eco-Lodge1
2021-07-10 14:42Hotel Blue River Resort2
2021-07-01 09:39Las Bromelias Lodge6
2021-07-11 12:40PN Tortuguero (localidad general)19
2021-06-26 17:41Road to Tenorio National Park1
2021-07-03 06:47Bijagua--Tapir Valley (restricted access)20
2021-07-17 10:50Bijagua--Bird Songs gardens5
2021-07-01 06:21Hotel Catarata Río Celeste1
2021-07-11 15:09Casitas Tenorio B&B3
2021-06-30 05:40PN Volcán Tenorio (área general)1
2021-07-20 14:52Las Heliconias Lodge and hanging bridges2
2021-07-16 14:27Sendero Heliconias2
2021-07-16 06:35Bijagua—Hogar de las Aves6
2021-07-24 08:59Puerto Viejo Sarapiqui1
2021-07-20 06:34Hotel Ara ambigua1
2021-07-16 15:26Refugio de Vida Silvestre Lapa Verde -- Sector Chilamate (Localidad General)2
2021-07-24 14:23Comandancia de Sarapiquí Road4
2021-07-18 06:23La Selva (OTS Reserve)--Road to Puerto Viejo River1
2021-07-02 05:36Chilamate Rainforest Eco Retreat1
2021-07-24 05:58Selva Verde Lodge12
2021-07-13 05:27La Selva (OTS Reserve)--entrance road3
2021-07-04 05:11La Selva (OTS Reserve)--Sendero Zompopa2
2021-07-08 09:39PN Rincón de la Vieja--Sector Las Pailas2
2021-07-18 12:51La Selva (OTS Reserve)--Dining hall area30
2021-07-02 06:38La Selva (OTS Reserve)--Stone Bridge, Río Puerto Viejo2
2021-07-04 05:31La Selva (OTS Reserve)--lab clearing3
2021-07-13 08:15La Selva (OTS Reserve)2
2021-06-29 15:47Rincon de la Vieja Lodge2
2021-07-22 09:44Hacienda Guachipelin2
2021-07-12 16:41SarapiquiS Rainforest Lodge1
2021-07-24 05:49Tirimbina Rainforest Center5
2021-07-02 13:45Costa Rica Nature Pavilion25
2021-07-23 18:55Río Pacuare boca3
2021-07-02 10:20Entrada Hacienda El Nispero, Pozo Azul.1
2021-07-19 07:21Hotel Arenal Manoa3
2021-07-11 06:08Hotel Arenal Paraiso3
2021-07-04 12:30Pierella Ecological Garden1
2021-06-26 06:14Arenal--Volcano Lodge and Gardens1
2021-07-18 11:23Reserva Natural Pacuare1
2021-07-21 09:02Yatama Eco-Lodge (Sarapiquí)1
2021-07-08 05:48Arenal--Hotel Los Lagos3
2021-07-21 13:49Tabacon Resort1
2021-07-22 15:58Sendero Bogarín1
2021-07-09 08:34PN Braulio Carrillo--El Ceibo2
2021-07-21 13:57Arenal--Mirador El Silencio2
2021-07-23 12:39Arenal Misticopark (Hanging Bridges)1
2021-07-18 06:44Arenal Oasis Eco Lodge1
2021-07-16 09:09PN Arenal4
2021-07-15 15:58Arenal--Peninsula road (shortcut to dam)4
2021-07-01 14:16Catarata de La Fortuna2
2021-07-20 06:10PN Arenal--Península Trail8
2021-07-16 05:30PN Arenal--Sendero Los Tucanes6
2021-07-21 08:51Arenal Observatory Lodge6
2021-06-27 16:57Arenal Observatory Lodge--access rd3
2021-07-06 05:33Colonia Trinidad-Invu1
2021-06-30 14:38Arenal Observatory Lodge--Sendero Catarata2
2021-06-27 09:01Guápiles1
2021-07-12 06:14Finca Luna Nueva2
2021-07-09 07:12Chachagua Rainforest Eco Lodge2
2021-07-14 14:00Suerre1
2021-07-11 13:30Donde Cope- La Unión de Guápiles1
2021-06-30 17:13El Congal Rainforest4
2021-07-11 07:56Centro Manú2
2021-07-10 11:20Nectar & Pollen Reserve2
2021-07-12 05:32Rainforest Adventures Braulio Carrillo2
2021-07-14 08:38PN Braulio Carrillo--Quebrada González3
2021-07-15 08:54Rancho Maximo8
2021-07-22 08:47Brisas de la Jungla14
2021-06-30 06:22Bella Vista de Guápiles2
2021-07-13 06:38Bajos del Toro--El Silencio Lodge2
2021-07-13 17:30Refugio de Vida Silvestre Monteverde2
2021-07-19 12:49Don Juan Coffee Plantation10
2021-07-10 07:17Curi-Cancha Refugio de Vida Silvestre3
2021-07-13 11:35Camino a la Reserva Alberto Manuel Brenes1
2021-07-14 09:40Pacuare Lodge8
2021-06-27 07:56Veragua Rainforest Park2
2021-07-10 06:20San Luis--Finca Ecológica1
2021-07-05 08:20Finca Tres Equis3
2021-07-17 09:23Río Silencio (San Ramón)2
2021-07-17 07:30Eco-Retreat Canto del Río2
2021-07-09 15:24Bajo La Paz, San Ramón5
2021-07-14 15:00San Diego de San Antonio16
2021-06-27 15:00San Antonio de Turrialba 2
2021-07-16 05:58Finca Rosa Blanca2
2021-06-26 05:27Turrialba--Aquiares20
2021-07-11 14:23Torre Alta Lodge y Eco Refugio Los Pavones2
2021-07-10 05:38Cahuita1
2021-07-11 07:40PN Cahuita--Puerto Vargas1
2021-06-26 09:40CATIE--Jardin Botánico
2021-07-15 15:30CATIE--Laguito2
2021-07-13 16:08CATIE1
2021-07-15 08:38Hotel Bougainvillea1
2021-07-16 17:47Sitio Mata--Camino a San Rafael
2021-07-03 14:59PN Cahuita1
2021-07-23 11:28Alto Barrantes, Santiago2
2021-06-27 09:10Parque del Este2
2021-06-30 07:30Palmares--Fundación Madre Verde3
2021-07-22 06:01Rancho Naturalista2
2021-07-12 17:39Rancho Naturalista--valle del Río Tuis1
2021-07-10 06:58Puerto Viejo de Talamanca3
2021-07-09 14:17Playa Negra (Puerto Viejo)4
2021-07-11 05:31Puerto viejo--Carretera a calle Margarita4
2021-06-26 06:10Colorado--west salinas1
2021-07-06 06:43Punta Uva10
2021-07-09 08:43La Kukula Logde - Puerto Viejo1
2021-07-03 04:52Recope road1
2021-07-18 09:12San Antonio de Platanillo--near Rancho Naturalista4
2021-07-21 06:27Rancho Naturalista--Cerro El Silencio3
2021-07-15 07:55Kekoldi4
2021-07-13 18:09Hotel Quelitales5
2021-07-09 07:55Gandoca2
2021-07-20 05:56Ujarrás (Cartago)4
2021-07-04 07:00Refugio de Vida Silvestre La Marta (Pejibaye)2
2021-07-11 11:17San San Pond Sak--California1
2021-07-17 12:51California (poblado)2
2021-07-21 09:38Verdesana Lodge1
2021-07-17 15:30Finca La Hacienda Milla 212
2021-06-26 14:50Finca Mena Bird Island1
2021-07-15 07:28Changuinola Canal7
2021-07-23 16:09Isla Carenero1
2021-07-18 07:27Charagre2
2021-07-19 07:33Parque Nacional Marino Isla Bastimentos25
2021-07-10 06:40Road from Villa Lapas to Pura Vida Waterfall Gardens1
2021-07-24 06:26Tranquilo Bay Eco Adventure Lodge8
2021-07-18 14:33Rinconcito de Macca Bite (original)3
2021-07-03 07:27Kuakuari Lodge3
2021-07-06 11:36Green Acres Chocolate Farm1
2021-07-10 05:17Jacó--Humedales Quebrada Bonita2
2021-07-17 07:21Camino a Punta Róbalo14
2021-07-25 05:58Platanillo de PZ1
2021-07-20 13:55Garbish Dump Road5
2021-07-15 06:20Chiriqui Grande Road lowlands2
2021-06-30 15:00Ojochal--Calle Perezoso1
2021-07-08 15:39Willie Mazu1
2021-07-17 10:50Bosque Protector Palo Seco7
2021-07-20 07:30Rio Sierpe--Mangrove Boat Tour1