Family Typical Antbirds (Thamnophilidae)

Least Concern

Caatinga Antwren (Herpsilochmus sellowi)


French: Grisin de Sellow German: Caatingaameisenfänger Spanish: Tiluchí de caatinga

Herpsilochmus sellowi

Whitney and Pacheco

, 2000,

Boa Nova, Bahia, Brazil


Long known under name of “H. pileatus”, but recent study showing population of SE Bahia to be a distinct species also revealed that this name is instead applicable to the newly discovered form (see H. pileatus, below). Morphological and vocal details reveal that present species differs clearly from H. pileatus and its close relatives, to the extent that it might even merit separation in its own genus#R. Monotypic.


NC & E Brazil (S Pará#R#R, Maranhão E to Rio Grande do Norte and S to Bahia and extreme N Minas Gerais).

Descriptive notes

10·5–11·5 cm; 6·5–8 g. Male has black crown and nape, white lores, long white to pale grey supercilium, short blackish postocular streak;... read more


Loudsong a rapid series of similar notes (e.g. 40 notes, 2·8 seconds) mostly repeated at... read more


Middle and upper strata of caatinga woodland and scrub, mata-de-cipó vine forest... read more

Food and feeding

Little published. Feeds on variety of insects, including orthopterans, particularly katydids (Tettigoniidae), also lepidopteran larvae,... read more


Almost nothing known. One record of nearly fledged young in Feb.


Presumed resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Previously considered Near Threatened. Uncommon to fairly common throughout most of range. Known to occur in three protected areas:... read more

Recommended citation

Zimmer, K. & Isler, M.L. (2020). Caatinga Antwren (Herpsilochmus sellowi). 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 24 February 2020).