Family Potoos (Nyctibiidae)

Least Concern

Andean Potoo (Nyctibius maculosus)


French: Ibijau des Andes German: Andentagschläfer Spanish: Nictibio andino

Nyctibius maculosus


, 1912,

Ambato, Ecuador


Two recent studies#R#R found that this species, N. griseus and N. leucopterus were closely related. Present species was for some time considered a race of N. leucopterus, which differs, however, in size, plumage, voice, and elevational distribution; may be closer to N. griseus. Monotypic.


Scattered localities in Andes from W Venezuela and E range in Colombia S through E Ecuador and E Peru to NW Bolivia.

Descriptive notes

34–38 cm; 145–195 g. Similar size to that of N. griseus; dark brown overall, never grey as in some individuals of N. griseus. Variable amount of... read more


Song, given on moonlit nights from one of several preferred perches, repeated at roughly 10-second... read more


Montane subtropical and temperate cloudforest with openings, at elevations of 1800–2800 m.... read more

Food and feeding

Stomachs contained large insects, including beetles.


One copulation observed in Sept in Ecuador. Otherwise unknown; presumed to be broadly similar to other potoos.


Presumed sedentary.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Very poorly known; may be fairly common locally. Extensive research and survey work needed in order to establish ecological requirements, as well as... read more

Recommended citation

Cohn-Haft, M. (2020). Andean Potoo (Nyctibius maculosus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 30 March 2020).