Near Lençois, Bahia state, Brazil.
Male. This species is found mainly in the Atlantic Rainforest region. (D3)
Conopophaga lineata vulgaris
Pico da Caledonia, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil.
Conopophaga aurita occidentalis
Zancudococha, Sucumbíos province, Ecuador.
Found widely throughout much of the Amazon and Guianan regions, though
some races are likely to be split in the future (see below). (S8)
Conopophaga aurita snethlageae
Cristalino Jungle Lodge, Mato Grosso state, Brazil.
A distinctive subspecies that will likely be split one of these days;
it really does not look much like the bird in the photo above. (S8)
About 40 km east of Barra do
Corda, Maranhão state, Brazil.
Male. A Brazilian
endemic. The Hooded Gnateater is a species rarely seen by birders
- not because it is rare, but because it inhabits an area of
northeastern Brazil that is off the beaten track. I found this
one on a random rest stop just off the side of a busy highway.
Yasuní Research Station, Orellana province, Ecuador.
Found in the western Amazon region, south of the Rio Napo.
Michelin forest, Ituberá, Bahia state, Brazil.
Male. Based on range, the subspecies should be
perspicillata, but this
may not be a valid taxon. It appears far more like the plate of
nigrifrons in HBW Vol. 8
than of melanops, with
the broader black on the forehead and more extensive white on the
belly (compare to next shot). However there is apparently a lot
of individual variation. (D3)
Conopophaga castaneiceps castaneiceps
WildSumaco, Napo province, Ecuador.
Male. Scarce and local in Andean cloudforest from Colombia to Peru. (S7)
Mashpi Shungo Reserve, Pichincha, Ecuador.
There is no easier place currently to see this fantastic bird. It has
become habituated and comes in to eat worms almost every day up on a
forested ridge above a chocolote farm (the chocolate is great too).
Current taxonomy places it with the Gnateaters
(Conopophagidae), which I honestly cannot agree with. See SACC Prop 235
for more info, but certainly in the field it behaves far more like an
antpitta than a gnateater, and I am strongly in favor of erecting a new
family (Pittasomidae) for Pittasoma rather than keeping the current classification. (S11)
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