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Picumnus rufiventris

Rufous-breasted Piculet

  • Order: Piciformes
  • Family: Picidae
  • Polytypic 3 Subspecies

Authors: Schulenberg, Thomas S., and Hope Batcheller


The Americas

Rufous-breasted Piculet is resident in the western Amazonia, from southeastern Colombia south to Bolivia, and east into western Brazil. Known localities in Colombia are near the base of the Andes, north to Villavicencio, Meta, although it probably occurs east along the Amazon River to southern Amazonas (Hilty and Brown 1986). In Ecuador it occurs on the lower slopes of the Andes and in adjacent lowlands (Ridgely and Greenfield 2001a). Distribution in Peru of Rufous-breasted Piculet. Solid circles: specimen records; open circles; sight records; dotted line: 1000 m contour (Schulenberg et al. 2006)  Rufous-breasted Piculet is widespread in Amazonian Peru, although apparently it does not occur in northeastern Peru east of the lower Río Napo. The distribution in Bolivia extends south to Cochabamba (Hennessey et al. 2003).

The elevational distribution of Rufous-breasted Piculet extends from the lowlands up to 400 m in Colombia (Hilty and Brown 1986); to 1100 m (locally to 1500 m) in Ecuador (Ridgely and Greenfield 2001a); up to 1250 m in Peru (Walker et al. 2006, Schulenberg et al. 2007); and up to 300 m in Bolivia (Hennessey et al. 2003).

Outside the Americas

Endemic to the Americas.


Rufous-breasted Piculet occurs primarily in the undergrowth of river edge forest, especially in thickets of Gynerium cane mixed with small, vine covered trees. It also occurs at the edge of low lying forest, and in dense second growth bordering roads, small gardens and other manmade clearings. Rarely is found far from rivers. Rufous-breasted Piculet apparently is absent or very rare in much seemingly suitable habitat within its range.  

Historical changes

None reported.

Fossil history

None reported.

Recommended Citation

Schulenberg, Thomas S., and Hope Batcheller. 2012. Rufous-breasted Piculet (Picumnus rufiventris), Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online:

This map is based on the maps available from the NatureServe InfoNatura website. The data for these maps are provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE.