TAPACULOS   -   RHINOCRYPTIDAE


Moustached Turca - Pteroptochos megapodius
Moustached Turca
Pteroptochos megapodius megapodius
El Yeso, Santiago Metropolitan region, Chile.
A unique, large, terrestrial tapaculo endemic to the highlands of Chile. This is a very distant shot, but it shows you how you typically see it, coming up onto the top of a rock to sing, giving a far-carrying series of low hoots. (S5)


White-throated Tapaculo - Scelorchilus albicollis
White-throated Tapaculo
Scelorchilus albicollis albicollis
La Campana National Park, Region V, Chile.
Another unique tapaculo endemic to Chile, found in dense vegetation on arid mountain slopes. I found this to be one of the hardest birds in Chile to get a decent view of, and was very lucky even to get a mediocre photo like this. (S5)


Chucao Tapaculo - Scelorchilus rubecula
Chucao Tapaculo
Scelorchilus rubecula rubecula
Nahuelbuta National Park, Region IX, Chile.
One of my favorite birds in all of Chile. A very active bird that scampers around on the ground with its tail held cocked straight up. With patience, you can have great views of it. it is almost endemic to Chile, but does barely get into neighboring Argentina. (S5)


Crested Gallito - Rhinocrypta lanceolata
Crested Gallito
Rhinocrypta lanceolata lanceolata
c.18 km northeast of JV Gonzales, Salta province, Argentina.
A cute, perky bird mostly restricted to the chaco region. They are mostly terrestrial, running around on the ground with their tails cocked up, but they occasionally come up in the trees to sing. (S5)


Sandy Gallito - Teledromas fuscus
Sandy Gallito
Teledromas fuscus
Los Cardones NP, Salta province, Argentina.
A very plain bird endemic to highland deserts in northern Argentina. They are mostly terrestrial, but sing from the tops of small bushes for a short period at dawn. (D3)

Spotted Bamboowren - Psilorhamphus guttatus
Spotted Bamboowren
Psilorhamphus guttatus
Folha Seca, Ubatuba, São Paulo state, Brazil.
A fantastic little bird in a monotypic genus endemic to the Atlantic Rainforest. They live in dense thickets (not just bamboo) which makes them hard to see, but they aren't really shy. This one came within a few feet of us. It has a very soft song that makes it hard to judge the distance of the bird. Listen to its song below. (S6)


Slaty Bristlefront - Merulaxis ater
Slaty Bristlefront
Merulaxis ater
Folha Seca, Ubatuba, São Paulo state, Brazil.
This is one of my favorite birds of the Atlantic Rainforest, partly due to it's incredible song (listen with the link below), one of the most distinctive in the entire region. It's endemic to Brazil, and quite localized. I usually see it in areas that have extensive bamboo nearby, but it is not always in the bamboo patches. (S6)


Rusty-belted Tapaculo - Liosceles thoracicus
Rusty-belted Tapaculo
Liosceles thoracicus erithacus
Shiripuno Lodge, Pastaza province, Ecuador.
The only tapaculo of the Amazon region. They are typically found around fallen logs on the floor of primary forest. (S4)


Ash-colored Tapaculo - Myornis senilis
Ash-colored Tapaculo
Myornis senilis
Yanacocha reserve, Pichincha province, Ecuador.
A pretty poor shot, I know, but it might be the only photo of this species on the web at the moment. It seems to be an especially hard one to nail down, even for a tapaculo. It lives in dense forest understory at high elevations in the Andes from Colombia to central Peru. (S8)


Junin Tapaculo - Scytalopus gettyae
Junin Tapaculo
Scytalopus gettyae
Apalla-Andamarca Road, Junín deparrment, Peru.
Juvenile. This species was only described in 2013, and the authors did not describe the juvenile plumage. This bird was not vocalizing, however it was strongly responsive to playback of the song of the species. (S8)


Trilling Tapaculo - Scytalopus parvirostris
Trilling Tapaculo
Scytalopus parvirostris
Paty Trail, Carpish, Húanuco department, Peru.
A common tapaculo found in cloudforests from northern Peru to western Bolivia. (S8)


Mouse-colored Tapaculo - Scytalopus speluncae
Mouse-colored Tapaculo
Scytalopus speluncae
Pico da Caledônia, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil.
The most common tapaculo of the Atlantic Forest highlands. (S8)


Rock Tapaculo - Scytalopus petrophilus
Rock Tapaculo
Scytalopus petrophilus
Caraça Sanctuary, Minas Gerais state, Brazil.
A recently described species endemic to interior southeastern Brazil. It differs from the previous species by (among other things) having barred flanks in adult plumage and in vocalizations. (S8)


Choco Tapaculo - Scytalopus chocoensis
Choco Tapaculo
Scytalopus chocoensis
La Unión, Esmeraldas province, Ecuador.
Occurs in very wet lowland and foothill forest from extreme eastern Panama to northwestern Ecuador. (S8)


Spillmann's Tapaculo - Scytalopus spillmanni
Spillmann's Tapaculo
Scytalopus spillmanni
Upper Tandayapa Valley, Pichincha province, Ecuador.
Tapaculos of the ever-growing genus Scytalopus are particularly hard to photograph. Until recently, this was my only shot, a very recently fledged juvenile that was begging at the side of the road. Identified because it is the only Scytalopus occurring in that location at that elevation. (P1f)


Chusquea Tapaculo - Scytalopus parkeri
Chusquea Tapaculo
Scytalopus parkeri
Tapichalaca reserve, Zamora-Chinchipe province, Ecuador.
Tapaculos like this may not be identifiable based only on the photo. I can tell you that the bird was singing, and so there was no doubt about the ID. This species is restricted to southern Ecuador and extreme northern Peru. (S5)


Brasilia Tapaculo - Scytalopus novacapitalis
Brasilia Tapaculo
Scytalopus novacapitalis
Serra da Canastra NP, Minas Gerais state, Brazil.
Endemic to gallery woodland and scrub in south-central Brazil. (S6)


Magellanic Tapaculo - Scytalopus magellanicus
Magellanic Tapaculo
Scytalopus magellanicus
Altos de Lircay National Reserve, Region VII, Chile.
The southernmost tapaculo in the world, reaching as far south as Tierra del Fuego. The white crown patch makes it an easy one to identify. (S5)


Neblina Tapaculo - Scytalopus altirostris
Neblina Tapaculo
Scytalopus altirostris
Bosque Unchog, Húanuco department, Peru.
Endemic to the high Andes of northern and central Peru, where it inhabits bushes and stunted woodland near treeline. (S8)


Tschudi's Tapaculo - Scytalopus acutirostris
Tschudi's Tapaculo
Scytalopus acutirostris
Bosque Unchog, Húanuco department, Peru.
Endemic to Peru. It inhabits high elevation Andean forests in northern and central Peru. (S8)


Tschudi's Tapaculo - Scytalopus acutirostris
Tschudi's Tapaculo
Scytalopus acutirostris
Bosque Unchog, Húanuco department, Peru.
Singing. (S8)


Zimmer's Tapaculo - Scytalopus zimmeri
Zimmer's Tapaculo
Scytalopus zimmeri
Los Cardones NP, Salta province, Argentina.
Amazingly out in the open for a Scytalopus. This species was only recently discovered in Argentina, previously assumed to be the very similar White-browed Tapaculo S. superciliaris, until their voices were better studied. (S5)


White-browed Tapaculo - Scytalopus superciliaris
White-browed Tapaculo
Scytalopus superciliaris superciliaris
Rio Los Sosa, Tucumán province, Argentina.
An Argentine endemic, occurring farther south than the previous species. Their plumages are almost identical, but they have different voices. (S5)


"Millpo Tapaculo" - Scytalopus sp. nov.
"Millpo Tapaculo"
Scytalopus sp. nov.
Runatullo, Junín department, Peru.
Ornithologists have known about this bird for a number of years, but it still remains undescribed. It inhabits grassy puna in the high Andes of central Peru. It can sometimes be quite easy to see, perching on rocks completely in the open. (S8)


Ocellated Tapaculo - Acropternis orthonyx
Ocellated Tapaculo
Acropternis orthonyx infuscatus
Yanacocha, Pichincha province, Ecuador.
Now opinions can vary, but I think this is the most spectacular of all tapaculos, and even rates as one of the coolest birds in South America. It is generally uncommon and local in bamboo-laden temperate forest in the Andes from Venezuela to extreme northern Peru. After several poor shots over the years, I finally got a very approachable individual near the hummer feeders at Yanacocha. The shot below is of the same bird. (S8)


Ocellated Tapaculo - Acropternis orthonyx
Ocellated Tapaculo
Acropternis orthonyx infuscatus
Yanacocha, Pichincha province, Ecuador.
The same bird as in the above photo. Notice the very long, spikelike hallux (rear claw). It also has a small tick just below the eye. (S8)


















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