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Tatama Tapaculo Scytalopus alvarezlopezi


Tatama Tapaculo is restricted to the Pacific slope of the Western Andes of Colombia, where it occurs from western Antioquia south to southwestern Valle del Cauca. This species first was discovered, in 1992, at a site known as Alto de Pisones, and so for many years it was known to birders as "Alto Pisones Tapaculo". Alto de Pisones is a site near the edge of Tamatá National Park, which lent the species its formal English name. As is typical of Scytalopus, the male Tatama Tapaculo is mostly gray, with a dark brown rump, and brown flanks, barred with black; the female presumably is similar (but browner), but the female plumage has not been described. Tatama Tapaculo occupies the undergrowth of humid montane forest from ca 1300-1750 m; its elevational range is bordered below by that of Choco Tapaculo (Scytalopus chocoensis), and above by that of Nariño Tapaculo (Scytalopus vicinior). Tatama Tapaculo is very similar to both in plumage and behavior, but easily is distinguished by its distinctive, frog-like song. The species name, alvarezlopezi, honors Humberto Álvarez-López, an influential Colombian ornithologist. Although Tatama Tapaculo has a restricted distribution, it is not considered to be threatened; it is locally common to abundant, and there continuous expanses of intact forest still remain within its range.

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© Andrew Spencer

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Recommended Citation

Tatama Tapaculo (Scytalopus alvarezlopezi), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: