Spotted Nothura (Nothura maculosa)

Spotted Nothura

[order] TINAMIFORMES | [family] Tinamidae | [latin] Nothura maculosa | [authority] Temminck, 1815 | [UK] Spotted Nothura | [FR] Tinamou tachete | [DE] Flecken-Steisshuhn | [ES] Inambu Chico Comun | [NL] Gevlekte Nothura


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. Nothura is a genus of birds in the tinamou family. This genus comprises five members of this South American family.

Physical charateristics

Overall it is cryptically patterned with brown and black mottling on a pale brownish base color, which provides good camouflage in terrestrial grassland situations.. The species looks quite similar to the closely related Chaco Nothura of northern Paraguay and Argentina, but is darker overall.

Listen to the sound of Spotted Nothura

[audio: Nothura.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 24 cm size max.: 27 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 4  
      eggs max.: 6  


South America : Southeast


It lives in dry lowland savanna habitat, excoet for two subspecies, N. submontana and S. pallida which can be found up to 2300 m. Also temperate grassland, as well as pasture land and agricultural land.


Nest is a small depression under a bush, lined with twigs and leaves. Clutch size is 4-6 brown eggs.

Feeding habits

While it eats seeds including crops such as rice and soya it also feeds on insects and can be found near cattle where it eats both insects disturbed by the cattle and ticks feeding on the cattle

Video Spotted Nothura


copyright: avesenmovimiento


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 increasing, 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 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.
Eggs are considered nutriceous by locals and of commercial importance. This is probably the reason this species is better known than its conspecifics.
Spotted Nothura status Least Concern


Sedentary in all of its range, but not well known

Distribution map

Spotted Nothura distribution range map

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