Stripe-backed Bittern Ixobrychus involucris

  • © Remco Douma

The diminutive Stripe-backed Bittern (33 cm length) is found from Colombia, Guyana, Venezuela, Trinidad, and Tobago south to Paraguay, southern Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Bolivia. There, it inhabits swamps, fresh and brackish marshes, rice fields, and well vegetated lake shores, occasionally in the company of Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis), another widespread, tiny heron with which it could be confused. Stripe-backed Bittern is pale brown above with buff-streaked wings and broad, buff and black streaks on the back. The crown is darker. Below it is pale with dark streaks on the front of the neck. The bill varies from pale horn colored to pale green to dull orange. The flight feathers are mostly rufous and the spread wing lacks the Least Bittern’s large buffy patch. Calls include single ook notes and a gargling sound of closely-spaced, low-pitched notes.

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© Davis Finch

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

Recommended Citation

Stripe-backed Bittern (Ixobrychus involucris), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: