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Xiphorhynchus woodcreepers from Peruvian foothills (1 Viewer)

Thibaud

Well-known member
Hi again,

I still struggle with Xiphorhynchus, so I turn to the experts once again!.
These were seen a few days apart in the Bosque de Protección San Matias San Carlos, a low range east of the main Andean chain in Pasco, central Peru. The first three photos are one bird, seen at about 1000 masl, and the other three a second bird, seen about 750 masl.
Of course, they never made a peep.

This should be high enough to rule out Elegant (especially the one at 1000). Am I right in thinking it's Ocellated (Tschudi's)? The other option would be Olive-backed...

As always, many thanks in advance,
T
 

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njlarsen

Gallery Moderator
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Barbados
Just a couple of observations:
The images at Birds of the world online shows Olive-backed to be truly that, back and wings in contrast to a more rufous tail.
However, the first bird has an eye ring that seems to differ from Ocellated.

Where that leaves you I am not sure. There could be geographical variation not captured in the images I looked at?

Niels
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
Yes agree ocellated is most likely option. It's a bird of terra firme cf flooded first for elegant. I'd be trying playback from my phone if it were me...
 

Thibaud

Well-known member
Just a couple of observations:
The images at Birds of the world online shows Olive-backed to be truly that, back and wings in contrast to a more rufous tail.
However, the first bird has an eye ring that seems to differ from Ocellated.

Where that leaves you I am not sure. There could be geographical variation not captured in the images I looked at?

Niels

Yes the variation shown in the photos confuses me a lot, even for birds that are identified as belonging to the same subspecies group of Ocellated (chunchutambo)...
 

Thibaud

Well-known member
Yes agree ocellated is most likely option. It's a bird of terra firme cf flooded first for elegant. I'd be trying playback from my phone if it were me...

But that distinction only applies where they overlap in the lowlands, right? And I definitely had Elegant in terra firme in the nearby lowlands. That one I could confirm because it was very vocal.

As for these, I tried playback (both species) on the first one and got no response. The second one was part of a big mixed flock, and by the time I was done taking photos of other goodies, 20 minutes had passed and I wasn't really thinking about that bird anymore 😅
 

THE_FERN

Well-known member
Well it's my subjective impression (without having looked into it in depth) that woodcreeper taxonomy remains a mess. The obvious problem is that it's difficult to assemble specimens of known provenance with associated representative vocalisations. I suppose you could if you kept them in captivity for an extended period...

Meanwhile, I don't know how much faith we can have in online photo libraries for this reason. I agree that playback is best but possibly only a rough guide in the field. A careful observer with time and the ability to record sound, take good quality photos, might well add valuable material (can you think of anyone?)
 

Thibaud

Well-known member
Meanwhile, I don't know how much faith we can have in online photo libraries for this reason. I agree that playback is best but possibly only a rough guide in the field. A careful observer with time and the ability to record sound, take good quality photos, might well add valuable material (can you think of anyone?)

Fully agree!
The problem is to get a bird cooperative enough to let you get both photos and recordings! So far, I've only managed that with Elegant. Still, it's a start...
 

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