Notice for readers: On March 31, Neotropical Birds will be integrated into the new Birds of the World, a powerful research database offering species accounts for every species on earth. Learn more at While Birds of the World is a subscription service, we remain committed to offering this content to Neotropical Birds contributors and to those unable to pay for it through our scholarship program. Stay tuned.

Little Tinamou Crypturellus soui

  • Order: Tinamiformes
  • Family: Tinamidae
  • Polytypic: 14 subspecies
  • Authors: Tshering Dema L, Marîa Félix Ramos-Ordoñez, R. Bribiesca-Formisano, Claudia I. Rodríguez-Flores, Carlos A. Soberanes-González, and Marîa del Coro Arizmendi

The Little Tinamou is a small, cryptic tinamou of Central America and of northwestern South America, the Amazon and Orinoco basins, and southeastern Brazil's Atlantic rainforest. This species patrols the ground near edges of well-shaded primary rainforest and dense secondary forest, slowly walking as it forages for fruit and seeds. The disctinctive tremelo of the Little Tinamou is heard much more often than the bird is seen, and, while it vocalizes more during dawn and dusk, can be heard midday with more regularity than the widely sympatric and more crepuscular Great Tinamou (Tinamus major). The Little Tinamou is small and plain grayish buff, lacking much of the barring patterns of other tinamou species.


© David L. Ross, Jr.

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Dema L, T., M. F. Ramos-Ordoñez, R. Bribiesca-Formisano, C. I. Rodríguez-Flores, C. A. Soberanes-González, and M. d. C. Arizmendi (2011). Little Tinamou (Crypturellus soui), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.