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Includes: African Spotted Creeper; Indian Spotted Creeper
Its plumage is strongly spotted and barred and it has a thin pointed down-curved bill, which it uses to extricate insects from bark; it lacks the stiff tail feathers which the true treecreepers use to support themselves on vertical trees.
Salpornis spilonotus is the only member of the subfamily Salpornithinae of the treecreeper family Certhiidae.
There are six subspecies:1
Recent research is interpreted to indicate that this species is better split into two: African Spotted Creeper S. salvadori for all African birds and Indian Spotted Creeper S. spilonotus for the birds from India.2
Open deciduous forest and woodlands and mangrove swamps.
Nests in tree crevices.
The voice of the west African subspecies emini is described as being quite different from other African subspecies.
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