Tropical Pewee (Contopus cinereus)

Tropical Pewee

[order] Passeriformes | [family] Tyrannidae | [latin] Contopus cinereus | [UK] Tropical Pewee | [FR] Moucherolle cendre | [DE] Sudlicher Waldschnappertyrann | [ES] Pibi Tropical | [IT] Piui tropicale | [NL] Spix-piewie


Genus Species subspecies Breeding Range Breeding Range 2 Non Breeding Range
Contopus cinereus LA widespread
Contopus cinereus aithalodes
Contopus cinereus bogotensis
Contopus cinereus brachytarsus
Contopus cinereus cinereus
Contopus cinereus pallescens
Contopus cinereus rhizophorus
Contopus cinereus surinamensis

Physical charateristics

The Tropical Pewee is 14 cm long and weighs 12 g. The upperparts are dark brown with a blackish crown and two whitish wing bars. The throat and centre of the breast are whitish, the abdomen is pale yellow, and the sides of the flanks and breast are grey-brown. The bill is short, with a black upper mandible and orange lower mandible. Sexes are similar.

Listen to the sound of Tropical Pewee

[audio: Pewee.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 13 cm size max.: 14 cm
incubation min.: 15 days incubation max.: 16 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 3  


The Tropical Pewee is found from Mexico to northern Colombia and Venezuela, in the Guianas and round the mouth of the Amazon and in eastern and central Brazil to Bolivia and eastern Paraguay. The subspecies C. c. punensis found in western Ecuador and Peru


They are found in forest borders and shrubby clearings where they sally for flying insects from an exposed perch to which they return frequently often shivering their tails after landing.


The nest is a small open saucer of fibre and grasses, lined with grass and decorated with lichen on its exterior. It is placed in a tree fork or on a branch. The female builds the nest and incubates the typical clutch of two creamy-white eggs, which are marked with red-brown spots at the larger end, for 15-16 days to hatching.

Feeding habits

Tropical Pewees perch on a high watchpoint from which they sally forth to catch flying insects, returning to the same exposed perch.


This species has a large range, with an estimated global extent of occurrence of 5,500,000 km

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