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Elegant Crested-Tinamou Eudromia elegans

  • Order: Tinamiformes
  • Family: Tinamidae
  • Polytypic: 10 subspecies
  • Authors: Vitor Gomes

Sounds and Vocal Behavior


The song of Elegant Crested-Tinamou is described as "a low mournful whistle given slowly ... wheet whee whee" (Wetmore 1926), and as "three melancholy whistles, each slightly lower in pitch than the preceding and somewhat fainter in volume, phweee phuuu wuu" (Jaramillo 2003).

For a representative audio recording with sonogram, see audio

Singing by Elegant Crested-Tinamou is seasonal. Singing is initiated well in advance of breeding, with the first songs heard by mid July, but the incidence of singing increases in August; singing reaches a peak in  September, October and November. The rate of singing diminishes again from December through February, and terminates in March or April of each year. Singing is most frequent in the early morning, but can be heard throughout the day, and sometimes are given well before sunrise (Bohl 1970).

Other vocalizations of Elegant Crested-Tinamou include "guttural, pumping, sharp whistles, nasal or foghorn-like, whistle-warbles, twittering, cat meowing or whining types" (Bohl 1970). Guttural, pumping, nasal, and whistle calls are used by the female in acts of dominance over other birds, both against other females and agains males (Bohl 1970).

Newly hatched chicks of Elegant Crested-Tinamous have thin peeping calls. The vocalizations are similar to those of adults by the age of 20 weeks, but less strong and rich (Bohl 1970).

Additional audio recordings of vocalizations of Elegant Crested-Tinamou can be heard at Macaulay Library, at xeno-canto, and at Internet Bird Collection.

Nonvocal Sounds

The sound of the beating wings can be heard when the tinamou is flushed at close range (Bohl 1970). Wetmore (1926) described this sound "a roar of wings", although Hudson (1928) commented that this sound was not as loud as in Red-winged Tinamou (Rhynchotus rufescens).

Recommended Citation

Gomes, V. (2014). Elegant Crested-Tinamou (Eudromia elegans), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.