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.

Black-bellied Gnateater Conopophaga melanogaster

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Conopophagidae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Harold F. Greeney

Priorities for Future Research

Black-bellied Gnateater is elusive and hard to detect for those unfamiliar with its vocalizations. As currently described, its range is disjunct, and surveys should be undertaken in the intervening gap. All aspects of its behavior, ecology, and phylogenetic relationships are in need of further study. As nonvocal sound production is rare amongst antpittas, antthrushes, and gnateaters (Krabbe and Schulenberg 2003, Whitney 2003), anyone with the opportunity to make careful observations on the nonvocal display noises (reportedly produced by wing rattling) would likely find this a rewarding line of inquiry. Indeed, it seems likely that the courtship rituals of this species would be fantastic to watch, as they likely also involve flaring of their large postocular tufts.

Recommended Citation

Greeney, H. F. (2013). Black-bellied Gnateater (Conopophaga melanogaster), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.