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Syrigma sibilatrix

Whistling Heron

  • Order: Pelecaniformes
  • Family: Ardeidae
  • Polytypic 2 Subspecies

Authors: Dean, Sam

Syrigma sibilatrix

Parque da Cidade, Distrito Federal, Brazil; 11 August 2010 © Bertrando Campos

The Whistling Heron is endemic to South America, where it occupies two disjunct regions. A northern population, which is smaller and paler, occurs in the llanos grasslands of Venezuela and eastern Colombia, whereas a larger, darker subspecies is widely distributed in the grasslands of southeastern South American, from the pantanal of Bolivia south to southeastern Brazil, Uruguay and northeastern Argentina. The Whistling Heron is one of the least aquatic members of its family and prefers to forage for large arthropods in open wet grasslands.  This bird is named for its distinctive high pitched calls.

Recommended Citation

Dean, Sam. 2012. Whistling Heron (Syrigma sibilatrix), 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.

  • Migration/Movement:Resident (nonmigratory)
  • Primary Habitat:Low, seasonally wet grassland
  • Foraging Strata:Terrestrial
  • Foraging Behavior:Stalk and Strike
  • Diet:Terrestrial invertebrates
  • Sociality:Solitary
  • Mating System:Unknown
  • Nest Form:Platform
  • Clutch: 3 - 4
  • IUCN Status:Least Concern