G.R. Gray (1840)
G.R. Gray (1840)
Brabourne & Chubb, 1914
†C. reai Chandler 2012
Crypturellus is a genus of tinamous containing mostly forest species. However, there are the odd few that are grassland or steppe tinamous. There are 21 species of and a total of 67 taxa (species and sub-species).
Crypturellus is formed from the Greek words κρυπτός (kruptós), "covered" or "hidden", οὐρά (ourá), "tail", and -ellus, a Latin diminutive suffix. The genus name Crypturellus therefore means "small hidden tail".
Crypturellus members, like other tinamous, have a cryptic color scheme dominated by browns, buffs, yellows, and greys. Unlike the rest of the family, these birds show some sexual dimorphism: the females are more heavily barred than the males and are also a bit brighter and larger.
The majority of species occupy forests or rain forests, preferring lower elevations. They range from Uruguay to Mexico. However, the earliest known occurrence of the genus is a fossil humerus, described as Crypturellus reai, from the Early Miocene Santa Cruz Formation of Patagonia.
Crypturellus are a very loud group of birds with melodious calls. They tend to use lower frequency when they call than other members of the Tinamou. Males and females have different calls and each species also has different calls. Normally each sex will have a long and a short phrase call. The genus can be grouped into two partial groups based on the similarity of their calls.
- Group 1
- Group 2
Some, like the slaty-breasted tinamou are quiet and hide during the middle of the day, choosing this time to take naps and conserve energy. The slaty-breasted tinamous also have a unique call amongst themselves, so much so that individual birds can be recognized by their calls. Most members of the genus have a variation in their calls, within the species, based on their geographical location. They also are known to use regular calling sites.
Similar to other forest tinamou, the members of this genus prefer to eat fleshy fruit; however like tinamous in general they are opportunistic and will eat a variety of foods including insects, which they have been known to leap 1 metre (39 in) high to obtain
Courtship technique for the members of Crypturellus consists of the male lowering his breast to the ground, stretching his neck forward and raising his posterior vertically. This will cause the male to appear larger and longer than normal, which not only impresses the female but also benefits the male in that it scares away competitors.
Females outnumber the males with some of the species, such as the variegated tinamou, having a 4:1 female-to-male ratio. They also only have a 2-egg clutch, which would explain why they are one of the species that have multiple clutches.
Once copulation has taken place, the female will choose a nest site that is typically a depression covered with leaves next to a tree trunk, usually between a couple of buttresses. Members of the genus that are savanna style birds such as the small-billed tinamou will instead lay their eggs in a cavity near a clump of grass. The eggs are oval or elliptical on the smaller birds and near spherical in the larger birds, such as the undulated tinamou and the Brazilian tinamou. The colorings of the eggs are varied, but in general are brightly colored with no splotches or spots; the colors fade over time and usually will change to a less overt color midway through the incubation period. The predominate colors are chocolate or red wine with the eggs of yellow-legged tinamou, undulated tinamou, little tinamou, and red-legged tinamou using different color schemes.
Clutch size can be upwards of 9-16 eggs, however these larger clutches are the products of multiple females. The male will incubate and care for the young. Incubation takes about 16 days. If he dies, the female will take over. When the chicks cross cleared areas, they will run like the chicks of rails. Some members of the genus mature rapidly, like the slaty-breasted tinamou which can gain adult size (not weight) by 20 days.
- †C. reai Chandler 2012
- Berlepsch's tinamou, Crypturellus berlepschi located in coastal forests of northwestern Colombia and northwestern Ecuador.
- Little tinamou, Crypturellus soui located in southern Mexico to northeastern Brazil west to Ecuador and east to French Guiana and also Trinidad
- Crypturellus soui soui located in northeastern South America
- Crypturellus soui meserythrus located in Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, parts of Nicaragua
- Crypturellus soui modestus located in Costa Rica and western Panama
- Crypturellus soui capnodes located in northwestern Panama
- Crypturellus soui poliocephalus located in southern Panama
- Crypturellus soui caucae located in north central Colombia
- Crypturellus soui harterti located in western Ecuador and western Colombia
- Crypturellus soui mustelinus located in Colombia and northwestern Venezuela
- Crypturellus soui caqueta located in southeastern Colombia
- Crypturellus soui nigriceps located in eastern Ecuador and northwestern Peru
- Crypturellus soui albigularis located in eastern and northern Brazil
- Crypturellus soui inconspicuus located in northern Bolivia and eastern Peru
- Crypturellus soui andrei Trinidad and northern Venezuela
- Crypturellus soui panamensis located in parts of Panama
- Cinereous tinamou, Crypturellus cinereus located in southeastern Colombia, southern Venezuela, Guyana, French Guiana, Suriname, northeastern Brazil, and northern Bolivia
- Tepui tinamou, Crypturellus ptaritepui located in the tepuis of southern Venezuela
- Brown tinamou, Crypturellus obsoletus located in northern Venezuela west through Ecuador, Peru, northern and southern Brazil, extreme northeastern Argentina, eastern Bolivia, and Paraguay
- Crypturellus obsoletus obsoletus located in southeastern Brazil, eastern Paraguay, and northeastern Argentina
- Crypturellus obsoletus griseiventris located in central Brazil
- Crypturellus obsoletus hypochraceus located in west central Brazil
- Crypturellus obsoletus punensis located in central Bolivia and southeastern Peru
- Crypturellus obsoletus traylori located in southeastern Peru
- Crypturellus obsoletus ochraceiventris located in central Peru
- Crypturellus obsoletus castaneus located in northern Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia
- Crypturellus obsoletus knoxi located in northwestern Venezuela
- Crypturellus obsoletus cerviniventris located in northern Venezuela
- Undulated tinamou, Crypturellus undulatus located in northern and central South America except Suriname and French Guiana
- Crypturellus undulatus undulatus located in southeasern Peru, eastern and northern Bolivia, Paraguay, and northern Argentina
- Crypturellus undulatus manapiare located in southern Venezuela
- Crypturellus undulatus simplex located in southwestern Guyana and northern Brazil
- Crypturellus undulatus adspersus located in southern Brazil
- Crypturellus undulatus yapura located in eastern Colombia, eastern Ecuador, eastern Peru, and northwestern Brazil
- Crypturellus undulatus vermiculatus located in eastern Brazil
- Pale-browed tinamou, Crypturellus transfasciatus located in the coastal forests of Ecuador and extreme northwestern Peru
- Brazilian tinamou, Crypturellus strigulosus located in central Brazil south of the Amazon River, northwestern Bolivia, and eastern Peru
- Grey-legged tinamou, Crypturellus duidae located in the tropical forests of east central Colombia and southern Venezuela
- Red-legged tinamou, Crypturellus erythropus located from northern Colombia east to French Guiana and south to northern Brazil and also Margarita Island
- Crypturellus erythropus erythropus located in eastern Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, and northeastern Brazil
- Crypturellus erythropus cursitans located in northern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela
- Crypturellus erythropus spencei located in northern Venezuela
- Crypturellus erythropus margaritae located on Margarita Island
- Magdalena tinamou, Crypturellus erythropus saltuarius, (no longer considered separate species) located in northeastern Colombia
- Santa Marta tinamou, Crypturellus erythropus idoneus, (no longer considered separate species) located in northeastern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela
- Colombian tinamou, Crypturellus erythropus columbianus, (no longer considered separate species) located in north central Colombia
- Yellow-legged tinamou, Crypturellus noctivagus located in the lowlands of eastern Brazil
- Black-capped tinamou, Crypturellus atrocapillus located in the lowlands of southeastern Peru and northern Bolivia
- Thicket tinamou, Crypturellus cinnamomeus located from northwestern Costa Rica north to Puebla, Mexico, and all of the Atlantic coastal Mexico and Pacific coastal Mexico excluding Sonora, Mexico
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus cinnamomeus located in southeastern Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus occidentalis located in western Mexico
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus mexicanus located in northeastern Mexico
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus sallaei located in southern Mexico
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus goldmani located in southeastern Mexico, northern Belize, and northern Guatemala
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus soconuscensis located in southwestern Mexico
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus vicinior located in southern Mexico, Guatemala, and western Honduras
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus delattrei located in western Nicaragua
- Crypturellus cinnamomeus praepes located in northwestern Costa Rica
- Slaty-breasted tinamou or Boucard's Tinamou, Crypturellus boucardi located in the gulf coastal region of Central America from southeastern Mexico to northeastern Honduras and southeastern Honduras to northern Costa Rica
- Choco tinamou, Crypturellus kerriae located in the humid foothills of southeastern Panama to northwestern Colombia
- Variegated tinamou, Crypturellus variegatus located in northern Bolivia, Amazonian Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela, and Colombia
- Rusty tinamou or Short-billed Tinamou, Crypturellus brevirostris located in French Guiana, eastern Peru, and northwestern and northeastern Brazil
- Bartlett's tinamou, Crypturellus bartletti located in western Amazonian Brazil, northern Bolivia, and eastern Peru
- Small-billed tinamou, Crypturellus parvirostris located from the Amazon Basin in Brazil to northeastern Argentina
- Barred tinamou, Crypturellus casiquiare located in eastern Colombia and southern Venezuela
- Tataupa tinamou, Crypturellus tataupa located in parts of Peru, northeastern Brazil, Paraguay, southern Brazil, eastern Bolivia, and northern Argentina
- Crypturellus tataupa tataupa located in eastern Bolivia, southern Brazil, Paraguay, and northern Argentina
- Crypturellus tataupa inops located in northwestern Peru and southern Ecuador
- Crypturellus tataupa peruviana located in west central Peru
- Crypturellus tataupa lepidotus located in northeastern Brazil
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