Family Ovenbirds (Furnariidae)

Near Threatened

Cabanis's Spinetail (Synallaxis cabanisi)


French: Synallaxe de Cabanis German: Rostscheitel-Dickichtschlüpfer Spanish: Pijuí de Cabanis

Synallaxis cabanisi

Berlepsch and Leverkühn

, 1890,

Chanchamayo Valley, Junín, Peru


Part of the “S. moesta group”; differs from S. moesta in tail structure and from S. macconnelli in juvenile plumage. In HBW, a disjunct population in N Mato Grosso was tentatively assigned to nominate race of present species, but recent work#R suggests that this C Brazilian population (now known to extend to S Pará and Maranhão) belongs to an undescribed taxon of the S. ruficapilla complex. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • S. c. cabanisi Berlepsch & Leverkühn, 1890 – Andean foothills in C & S Peru (Huánuco S to Puno, possibly also W Ucayali).
  • S. c. fulviventris Chapman, 1924 – foothills of Andes in N Bolivia (La Paz, W Beni, Cochabamba).
  • Descriptive notes

    16–18 cm; 16–24 g. Relatively large Synallaxis with typical plumage pattern but comparatively short tail. Nominate race has sooty grey-brown face with... read more


    Low nasal “nyap”, often doubled, probably a call; song not described.


    Tropical lowland evergreen forest edge, secondary forest, river-edge forest; dense undergrowth at... read more

    Food and feeding

    Little known. Usually found in pairs. Probably gleans arthropods from foliage and small branches within 1–2 m of ground.


    No information.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to fairly common, but local in distribution. A poorly known species. Isolated population in Brazil only recently discovered, in 1997.

    Recommended citation

    Remsen, J.V., Jr (2019). Cabanis's Spinetail (Synallaxis cabanisi). 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 11 December 2019).