Family Typical Antbirds (Thamnophilidae)

Least Concern

Black Bushbird (Neoctantes niger)


French: Batara des fourrés German: Buschameisenwürger Spanish: Batará arbustero

Xenops niger


, 1859,

Marabitanas, Amazonas, Brazil




SC & SE Colombia (Putumayo, Vaupés, N Amazonas), E Ecuador, NE & SE Peru (mainly N Amazonas and Loreto, also Ucayali#R, Cuzco, Madre de Dios and Puno#R) and W Amazonian Brazil (extreme NW & SW Amazonas, W Acre; also isolated records E to W Pará).

Descriptive notes

15–16 cm; 29–32 g. Lower mandible upturned; white interscapular patch. Male is entirely black. Female is sooty black, with rufous on breast, side and central... read more


Loudsong a countable (e.g. rate of 9 notes in 5 seconds) series of short, slightly upslurred... read more


Understorey of lowland evergreen forest and adjacent second growth, to 750 m. Occurs in both ... read more

Food and feeding

Little published. Assumed to feed on various insects, perhaps also other arthropods. Most witnessed prey captures have involved items too... read more


A nest found in Sept 2011 in the buffer zone of Manu National Park, Peru, contained a single egg that was being incubated by the male; nest... read more


Presumed resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). A low-density species that is not well known; considered rare to locally uncommon throughout its range. Its secretive nature, coupled... read more

Recommended citation

Zimmer, K. & Isler, M.L. (2020). Black Bushbird (Neoctantes niger). 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 26 February 2020).