This video from Panama says about itself:
20 March 2017
Male Lance-tailed Manakins go to great lengths to keep a well maintained display perch. Notice how this male “cleans” the area by tearing away at leaves in the area and scratching the surfaces of the surrounding branches with his beak.
From the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in the USA:
The Manakin Cam Returns
On the small Panamanian island of Boca Brava, male Lance-tailed Manakins are beginning to compete for mates—which they do by working together. You’ll have a front row seat when you watch our live cam.
The Cornell Lab has partnered with Dr. Emily DuVal to bring this live view of manakins to your screen. She has been studying these cooperative displays since 1999, unraveling the mystery of why males form alliances and work together to woo females—even though only one male typically gets to mate.
Here’s what to look for: The live cam shows a display perch used by one pair of males, within a larger area with up to 30 “alpha” males and their partners. Throughout the day, the males perform coordinated displays featuring leaps and butterfly-like flights on the display perch.
Occasionally, a brownish female stops by to watch. If she seems interested and receptive, the beta male typically leaves the area and the alpha male starts displaying on his own.
Through much of the day the perch may appear empty; but you can often hear the sweet calls of the male manakins singing a duet, trying to entice a female to check out one of their meticulously maintained display perches (they also have two other display areas off-cam). When the manakins aren’t around, other species (like this antshrike, this wren, or even this wood-rail!) may wander into the frame, and in the mornings and evenings the roaring of howler monkeys echoes through the forest.
Share what you see and hear with us on the cam’s Twitter feed, @ManakinCam, and join us in learning more about these gorgeous birds and their complicated approach to courtship. Save up your questions—Dr. DuVal will be joining us for a live Q&A session in the near future. Stay tuned for more details, and thanks for watching.