Huayco Tinamou (Rhynchotus maculicollis)

Huayco Tinamou

[order] TINAMIFORMES | [family] Tinamidae | [latin] Rhynchotus maculicollis | [authority] G.R. Gray, 1867 | [UK] Huayco Tinamou | [FR] Tinamou de Huayco | [DE] Huaycosteisshuhn | [ES] Guaipo | [NL] Huaycotinamoe


Monotypic species


Tinamous are paleognaths related to the flightless ratites. They are probably close in appearance to the flying ancestors of the ratites. Unlike other Ratites, Tinamous can fly, although in general, they are not strong fliers. Rhynchotus is a genus of birds in the Tinamou family. This genus comprises two members of this South American family.

Physical charateristics

Huayco Tinamou is one of the most recently-recognized species in South America, recently split from the widespread Red-winged Tinamou Rhynchotus rufescens. The Huayco Tinamou differs from the Red-winged Tinamou in voice, range, and some minor plumage differences. The Huayco Tinamou has a black streaked and spotted head and neck

Listen to the sound of Huayco Tinamou

[audio: Tinamou.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

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size min.: 39 cm size max.: 42 cm
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South America : Northwest Bolivia, Northwest Argentina. Huayco Tinamous are found in central and southern Bolivia and northern Argentina, generally on the east side of the Andean crest.


It prefers semi-arid scrub and cereal fields.


Nest is a depression in the ground lined with leaves and twigs. The clutch size is 3-5 red to purple eggs which are incubated for about three weeks.

Feeding habits

Its diet varies by season; it taking insects and other small animals (even small mammals) in the summer, and switching to vegetable matter, such as fruits, shoots, tubers and bulbs, in the winter. It can be an agricultural pest, feeding on cereals, rice and peanuts, as well as being predatory, taking poisonous snakes and even jumping up into the air to snatch an insect off a leaf.


This species has a very 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). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, 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.
Previously, it was considered a subspecies of the Red-winged Tinamou, but it has a different song, and its head and neck are streaked and spotted black. The SACC split this species and the IUCN followed suit in 2006.
Huayco Tinamou status Least Concern


Sedentary in all of its range, but not well known

Distribution map

Huayco Tinamou distribution range map

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