Family Ovenbirds (Furnariidae)

Least Concern

Baron's Spinetail (Cranioleuca baroni)


French: Synallaxe de Baron German: Weißbrauen-Baumschlüpfer Spanish: Curutié de Baron

Siptornis baroni


, 1895,

Huamachuco, La Libertad, and Cajabamba, Cajamarca, Peru


According to recent genetic analysis#R, this species is part of a group that also contains C. antisiensis and C. curtata, this group being sister to C. erythrops. May be conspecific with C. antisiensis; although populations at extremes of ranges are clearly different, the two grade into one another in step-clinal manner, making it difficult or impossible to determine to which taxon certain populations should be assigned (this applies also to apparently undescribed population in Amazonas, N Peru); thorough, quantitative analysis of all parameters (plumage, morphometrics, vocalizations, genetics) required. Size variation among populations of present species substantial but somewhat irregular, correlated strongly with elevation (e.g. in Ancash, birds of high elevations in N are much larger than low-elevation ones in S); moreover, inter-locality variation is extraordinary, with virtually every population sample seemingly diagnosable on basis of size and plumage characters, and many at least as distinctive as currently accepted races. Three subspecies tentatively recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. b. baroni (Salvin, 1895) – Andes of N & C Peru (C Cajamarca and S Amazonas S to La Libertad, Ancash and WC Huánuco).
  • C. b. capitalis J. T. Zimmer, 1924 – Andes of C Peru (E Huánuco, Pasco).
  • C. b. zaratensis Koepcke, 1961 – Andes of WC Peru (Lima).
  • Descriptive notes

    15–19 cm; 19–32 g. The largest Cranioleuca. Nominate race has conspicuous white supercilium; rest of face dark grey-brown, variably flammulated buff-... read more


    Song a loud, shrill descending series 1–4 seconds long, described as “quick-quick-quick-he-e-... read more


    Semi-humid to semi-arid montane woodland, often with alders (Alnus); locally in ... read more

    Food and feeding

    Arthropods; Lepidoptera larvae recorded in diet. Forages singly, in pairs, or in flocks of up to 10 individuals, occasionally with mixed-... read more


    Fledgling in Apr. No other information.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to fairly common. No known potential threats within elevational range occupied by this species.

    Recommended citation

    Remsen, J.V., Jr (2020). Baron's Spinetail (Cranioleuca baroni). 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 25 February 2020).