Olivaceous Woodcreeper Sittasomus griseicapillus

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Furnariidae
  • Polytypic: 15 subspecies
  • Authors: Michael A. Patten

Priorities for Future Research

For such a common and widespread species, remarkably little is known about the Olivaceous Woodcreeper’s breeding ecology. Fewer than five nests have been found, and not a single one of those was monitored from begin to end. Accordingly, there are no data on hatching rates, predation (rates or species involved), or fledging success, and apparent clutch size is based on just a few samples. It is not even clear if this species is like the Dendrocincla woodcreepers in having female-only parental care or like other species in having biparental care. Likewise, almost nothing is known of this species’ physiology or energetic demands, including for molt and thermoregulation, and phenology of molt requires study. Save for voice, various other aspects of the species’ behavior are similarly unknown.

Voice figures to play a prominent role in future studies of reproductive isolation among the subspecies groups. With well-designed experiments on female choice and male response to playback, coupled with analysis of genetic variation in and near zones of geographic contact or close approach, the Olivaceous Woodcreeper as recognized currently may prove to be comprised of multiple biological species. Only a detailed and comprehensive study of species limits in the group will settle this issue.

Recommended Citation

Patten, M. A. (2011). Olivaceous Woodcreeper (Sittasomus griseicapillus), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.oliwoo1.01