Least Seedsnipe Thinocorus rumicivorus

  • Order: Charadriiformes
  • Family: Thinocoridae
  • Polytypic: 4 subspecies
  • Authors needed...
  • © Glenn Bartley

The Least Seedsnipe is the smallest and one of the most widespread of the four species of seedsnipe. While the larger seedsnipe in the genus Attagis are ecological replacements for northern hemisphere Ptarmigans (Lagopus sp.), the Least Seedsnipe could be considered an ecological replacement for the Larks (Alaudidae) which are absent from southern South America. The Least Seedsnipe may be found from coastal areas in Peru, to highlands areas farther south, and even the Patagonian Steppe in the far south of the continent. The microhabitat that it prefers in all of those areas is a dry zone with sparse vegetation and an abundance of fine gravel, so in its own way it takes a harsh and unwelcoming sparse environment, as that of the Alpine zone taken by its Attagis relatives. Pairs of Least Seedsnipe patrol their territory, running quickly in a stop-start manner much like a lark. When they stop, the well camouflaged upperparts may render them nearly invisible in their pale, gravelly substrate. Early in the breeding season males may sing from a rock or even in song-flight uttering a pleasant but repetitive voice.

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© Andrew Spencer

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

Recommended Citation

Least Seedsnipe (Thinocorus rumicivorus), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: https://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/Species-Account/nb/species/leasee1