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Birds of North and Middle America, part V/Genus 2. Thamnistes Sclater and Salvin


Genus THAMNISTES Sclater and Salvin.

Thamnistes Sclater and Salvin, Proc. Zool. Soc. Lond., 1860, 299. (Type, T. anabatinus Sclater and Salvin.)

Medium-sized or rather small Formicariidæ (length about 130 mm.) with rather large, stout, and strongly hooked bill, small, circular nostrils and coloration plain brown above with wings and tail more rufescent (adult male with a concealed dorsal patch of ochraceous or tawny), the under parts plain olive-buffy or yellowish.

Bill a little shorter than head, rather stout, strongly hooked, its width at frontal antiæ greater than its depth at same point and equal to about half the distance from nostril to tip of maxilla; culmen very slightly curved from base to near tip, where strongly decurved, the tip of maxilla conspicuously uncinate; maxillary tomium nearly straight, deeply notched subterminally; mandible subfalcate (slightly recurved terminally), the tomium nearly straight, distinctly toothed

and notched sub terminally; gonys distinctly convex, ascending terminally, more strongly convex and rather prominent basally. Nostril exposed, very small, circular, with an oblique tubercle in posterior half. Rictal bristles obvious but small; feathers of chin, lores, and anterior portion of malar region with distinct bristly points. Wing moderate, rather pointed, the primaries decidedly longer than secondaries; sixth and seventh, or sixth, seventh and eighth, primaries longest, the tenth (outermost) shorter, the ninth longer, than secondaries. Tail decidedly shorter than wing to end of secondaries, strongly rounded (graduation about equal to half the length of exposed culmen), the rectrices (12) rather narrow, rounded terminally. Tarsus longer than exposed culmen, less than one- third as long as wing; acrotarsium distinctly scutellate; outer side of planta indistinctly scutellate or with scutella obsolete, the inner side with a single series of rather small roundish or oval scutella; middle toe, with claw, much shorter than tarsus; outer toe, without claw, reaching to beyond middle of subterminal phalanx of middle toe, the inner toe slightly shorter; hallux about as long as inner toe but much stouter; basal phalanx of middle toe wholly united to outer toe, for about half its length to inner toe; claws strongly curved, broad, compressed, that of hallux much shorter than the digit.

Coloration. — Above plain brown, the wings (sometimes pileum also) more rufescent, the tail chestnut or deep cinnamon-rufous; under parts plain olive-buffy or yellowish, more grayish olive on flanks; adult males with a concealed dorsal patch of ochraceous or tawny.

Range. — Southern Mexico to Peru. (Monotypic ?)[1]



Adult male. — Above plain tawny brown (nearest raw umber or tawny olive), paler on forehead; upper tail-coverts and tail deep cinnamon-rufous or rufous-chestnut; wings (including secondaries) dull cinnamon-rufous or russet; interscapulars light cinnamon-rufous or deep ochraceous-buff beneath surface (forming a large and conspicuous patch when feathers are spread) followed immediately by a subterminal bar or spot of black; an indistinct superciliary stripe and suborbital area of pale grayish buffy, the two separated posteriorly by a postocular streak of brown; auricular region and sides of neck similar in color to back, but paler, the color deepening somewhat on malar region; general color of under parts pale brownish yellowish anteriorly, more grayish (tending more or less toward olive-buff) posteriorly, the sides and flanks darker and more grayish (approaching light hair brown); under wing-coverts and broad edgings to inner webs of remiges ochraceous-buff; maxilla dusky, with paler tomia; mandible pale yellowish grayish (in dried skins); feet dusky (bluish gray in life?); length (skins), 136.5-142 (139); wing, 65-67 (66); tail, 53.5-62.5 (58); column, 18.5-19.5 (19); tarsus, 21-21.5 (21.2); middle toe, 12-12.5 (12.2).[2]

Adult female. — Similar to the adult male but without the concealed dorsal patch of cinnamon-rufous or ochraceous-buff, the underlying portion of the interscapulars being pale gray with whitish shaft- streaks; length (skins), 129.5-145 (138); wing, 66-67 (66.5); tail, 54-56 (55.2); cuhnen, 18-20 (19.2); tarsus, 19.5-20.5 (19.9); middle toe, 12-12.5 (12.1).[3]

Southeastern Mexico, in State of Tabasco (Teapa); Guatemala (Choctúm; Cajabón; Samayoa; Telemán); British Honduras (Toledo District).

Thamnistes anahatinus Sclater and Salvin, Proc. Zool. Soc. Lond., 1860, 299 (Choctúm, Vera Paz, Guatemala; coll. P. L. Sclater). — Salvin and Sclater, Ibis, 1860, 399 (Choctúm). — Sclater, Cat. Am. Birds, 1862, 176 (Choctum and Cajabón, Guatemala); Cat. Birds Brit. Mus., xv, 1890, 216, part (Choctum, Cajabón, and Samayoa, Guatemala). — Salvin and Godman, Biol. Centr.-Am., Aves, ii, 1892, 205, part, pl. 50, fig. 1 (Telemán, etc., Guatemala).
[Thamnistes] anabatinus Sclater and Salvin, Nom. Av. Neotr., 1873, 70, part. — Sharpe, Hand-list, iii, 1901, 17, part.
Thamnistes anabatinus anabatinus Ridgway, Proc. Biol. Soc. Wash., xxi, Oct. 20, 1908, 193, in text.



Similar to T. a. anabatinus but coloration much darker and less ochraceous (more olivaceous) above, the pileum more or less dis- tinctly rufescent (sometimes deep russet or mars brown); wings much less rufescent, especially the secondaries; size averaging smaller. Adult male. — Length (skins), 126-135.5 (130.4); wing, 65-69.5 (67.7); tail, 48-52 (49.7); culmen, 18-19.5 (18.7); tarsus, 19-20.5 (19.6); middle toe, 11-13 (11.8).[4]

Adult female. — Length 121-148 (131); wing, 61.5-69 (65.9); tail, 45.5-53.5 (50.7); culmen, 17.5-20.5 (20.1); tarsus, 19.5-20.5 (20.1); middle toe, 11-12.5 (11.7).[4]

Costa Rica (Angostura; Tucurríqui; Jiménez; Volcan de Turrialba; Carrillo; La Hondura; Pacuare; Naranjo de Cartago; Guápiles; El Hogár; Bonilla; La Balsa; Tuis; La Vijágua; Cariblanco de Sarapiquí; El Pozo de Térraba; Pozo del Pitál) and western Panamá (Calobre; Calovévora; Bugaba; Volcan de Chiriquí, 2,000-3,000 feet).

Thamnistes anabatinus (not of Sclater and Salvia) Lawrence, Ann. Lyc. N. Y., ix, 1868, 107 (Angostura and Tucurríqui, Costa Rica). — Frantzius, Journ. für Orn., 1869, 305 (Costa Rica). — Salvin, Proc. Zool. Soc. Lond., 1870, 194 (Calovévorá and Bugaba, Panamá; crit.). — Zeledón, Anal. Mus. Nac. Costa Rica, i, 1887, 114 (Angostura, Pacuare, and Naranjo, Costa Rica). — Salvin and Godman, Biol. Centr.-Am., Aves, ii, 1892, 205, part (Costa Rican and Panaman localities and references). — Cherrie, Anal. Inst. Fis.-Geog. Costa Rica, vi, 1893, 19 (Pozo del Pitál, Costa Rica). — Bangs, Proc. New Engl. Zool. Club, iii, 1902, 41 (Volcan de Chiriquí, Panamá, 2,000-3,000 ft.).
[Thamnistes] anabatinus Sclater and Salvin, Nom. Av. Neotr., 1873, 70, part. — Sharpe, Hand-list, iii, 1901, 17, part.
Thamnistes anabatinus saturatus Ridgway, Proc. Biol. Soc. Wash., xxi, Oct. 20, 1908, 193 (Bonilla, Costa Rica, 2,600 ft.; coll. U. S. Nat. Mus.). — Carriker, Ann Carnegie Mus., i, 1910, 605 (Costa Rican range; crit.; habits).

  1. Although three species are recognized by authorities, it is likely that these may be in reality forms of one species. Two of these, however (T. æquatorialis Sclater and T. rufescens Cabanis), I have not seen.
  2. Two specimens.
  3. Four specimens.
    Locality. Wing. Tail. Culmen. Tarsus. Middle
    One adult male from Guatemala 67 62.5 18.5 21.5 12
    One adult male from Tabasco (Teapa) 65 53.5 19.5 21 12.5
    Two adult females from British Honduras (Toledo District) 66 55 19 19.7 12.2
    One adult female from Guatemala 67 55 18 19.5 12
    One adult female from Tabasco (Teapa) 66 56 20 20.5 12
  4. 4.0 4.1 Ten specimens, all from Costa Rica. Costa Rican specimens compare in measurements with those from Panamá (Chiriquí, Caribbean slope) as follows:
    Locality. Wing. Tail. Culmen. Tarsus. Middle
    Ten adult males from Costa Rica 67.7 49.7 18.7 19.6 11.8
    Two adult males from Panamá (Chiriquí, Caribbean slope) 66 51.2 18 20 12