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A black Cacicus cela with yellow wing coverts and rump on a branch
cacicus cela
Cacicus cela (Yellow-rumped Cacique)

The Yellow-rumped Cacique is a passerine bird belonging to the New World family Icteridae. It is primarily found in northern South America, spanning regions from Panama and Trinidad to Peru, Bolivia, and central Brazil, with sightings extending as far north as Nayarit state in Mexico​​. This species is recognized in three subspecies: C. c. vitellinus in the Panama Canal Zone to north and central Colombia; C. c. flavicrissus in west Ecuador and northwest Peru; and C. c. cela in east Colombia and Venezuela, the Guianas, south to central Bolivia and south Brazil​​. The Yellow-rumped Cacique has a slim profile, long tail, blue eyes, and a pale yellow pointed bill. The male, larger than the female, measures about 11 inches in length and weighs around 3.7 ounces, while the female is approximately 9.1 inches long and weighs about 2.1 ounces. The species sports primarily black plumage, except for a bright yellow rump, tail base, lower belly, and wing epaulets. The female is a duller black compared to the male, and juveniles resemble females but have dark eyes and a brown bill base​​. The bird's diet is varied, including large insects like beetles, caterpillars, crickets, grasshoppers, and katydids, as well as spiders, nectar, and fruits such as chupa-chupa and figs​​. The song of the male Yellow-rumped Cacique is notably complex, featuring a blend of fluting notes, cackles, wheezes, and sometimes mimicry, contributing to a lively and audible presence of an active colony​​. In terms of conservation, it is considered to be of 'Least Concern' due to its wide range and large population.

A black Cacicus cela with yellow wing coverts and rump
Black with yellow Cacicus cela on a tree branch
Side view of a Cacicus cela  perched on a tree
Cacicus cela  perched on a branch seen from behind

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