Spot-winged Falconet (Spiziapteryx circumcincta)

Spot-winged Falconet

[order] FALCONIFORMES | [family] Falconidae | [latin] Spiziapteryx circumcincta | [authority] Kaup, 1852 | [UK] Spot-winged Falconet | [FR] Carnifex a ailes tachetees | [DE] Tropfenfalke | [ES] Halconcito Argentino | [NL] Witstuitvalk


Monotypic species


The Spot-winged Falconet (Spiziapteryx circumcincta) is a species of bird of prey in the Falconidae family. It is monotypic within the genus Spiziapteryx. The taxonomic relationships of this form require further study. Based on osteological evidence, Olson (1976) argued that this monotypic genus is most closely related to the other genera (Caracara, Herpetotheres, Micrastur) of falconids endemic to the Neotropics and not to the African Pygmy Falcon (Polihierax), where it had been placed by previous authors.

Physical charateristics

It is a small raptor, about the same size as the American Kestrel (Falco sparverius), but with a very different plumage. The falconet is grayish brown above and white below with dark streaking throughout, and a white rump,; its name comes from the white spots on the flight feathers and wing coverts.

Listen to the sound of Spot-winged Falconet

[audio: Falconet.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

recorded by Nick Athanas

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 28 cm size max.: 33 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 30 days fledging max.: 35 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 4  


South America : Southcentral


The Spot-winged Falconet is the only member of its genus and is endemic to the chaco savannas, woodland and scrub of Bolivia and central Argentina


Usually nests in occupied and unoccupied nests of the Monk Parakeet, but also in old nests of ovenbirds. Clutch size is 2-4 eggs; fledging period probably around 33 days.

Feeding habits

It feeds primarily on insects, especially flying ones such as dragonflies, damselflies and cicadas, but will also take lizards and small birds.

Video Spot-winged Falconet


copyright: Igor Berkunsky


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size may be moderately small to large, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
The Spot-winged Falconet is occasionally tolerated at the communal nests of Monk Parakeets which it often uses for roosting. Indeed, the falconet has been observed roosting in active Monk Parakeets nests with the parakeets entering the chamber after the falconet and spending the night with them.
Spot-winged Falconet status Least Concern


Distribution map

Spot-winged Falconet distribution range map

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