Family Tinamous (Tinamidae)

Least Concern

Chilean Tinamou (Nothoprocta perdicaria)


French: Tinamou perdrix German: Chilesteißhuhn Spanish: Tinamú chileno

Crypturus perdicarius


, 1830,

Valparaíso, Chile


An analysis of phenotypic characters suggests that this species is possibly sister to N. curvirostris#R. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • N. p. perdicaria (Kittlitz, 1830) – NC Chile (Atacama S to Ñuble).
  • N. p. sanborni Conover, 1924 – SC Chile (Maule S to Llanquihue, in Los Lagos), and possibly adjacent parts of SW Argentina#R#R.
  • Introduced (perdicaria) to Easter I.

    Descriptive notes

    29·5–32 cm; c. 458 g. Drab-looking bird with horn-coloured curved bill, upperparts look rather striped, and elongated crown feathers often raised to form... read more


    Single shrill whistle on rising scale, “sweeewiiii”; alarm also a shrill whistle, in... read more


    Semi arid prairies, grassland and scrub; seen also in fields of cereals. Frequently beside roads. read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly granivorous. In analysis of crop contents of 79 birds captured in different agricultural areas, years (1995–2001) and seasons... read more


    Breeds in Dec; on Easter I, introduced birds mating in Aug. Loosely woven nest made from grass, concealed under bush or among grass or... read more


    Presumably sedentary. Usually in small coveys.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Scarce in N of range, commoner in S. Formerly common in most of range, but numbers much reduced in recent years, especially in N. On... read more

    Recommended citation

    Cabot, J., Christie, D.A., Jutglar, F. & Sharpe, C.J. (2018). Chilean Tinamou (Nothoprocta perdicaria). 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 19 October 2018).