The Resplendent Quetzal, Pharomachrus moccino, is a rare Neotropical bird harbouring highly coloured, bright and elongated feathers and regarded as a symbol of Central American cloud forest. The biology and ecology of this iconic species is still poorly known when more information are needed for its conservation. Here, we developed a research dedicated to the sound behaviour and ecology of the Resplendent Quetzal with observations and experiments conducted in Guatemala. Among others, we could describe the acoustic repertoire, assess acoustic differences between sub-species and species belonging to the genus Pharomachrus, and develop a passive acoustic monitoring system that could be used to track the dynamics of local populations.

Participants and collaborations

Pablo Bolaños-Sittler (PI), Thierry Aubin, Jérôme Fuchs, Claire Dallies (Universidad del Valle de Guatemala, Guatemala)


Guatefuturo, National Geographic Society


Sound sample

Call of Pharomachrus moccino. 11 February 2016. Recording by Pablo Bolaños.




. Bolaños P, Aubin T, Padilla A, Sueur J (2021) – Acoustic competition within a tropical bird community: the case of the Resplendent Quetzal Pharomachrus mocinno in Guatemala. Journal of Tropical Ecology. link

. Bolaños-Sittler, P, Sueur J, Fuchs J, Aubin T (2019) – Vocalisation of the rare and flagship species Pharomachrus mocinno (Aves: Trogonidae): implications for its taxonomy, evolution and conservation. Bioacoustics, in press. link