Family Tinamous (Tinamidae)

Least Concern

Elegant Crested Tinamou (Eudromia elegans)


French: Tinamou élégant German: Perlsteißhuhn Spanish: Martineta común

Eudromia elegans

I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire

, 1832,

southern Buenos Aires, Argentina


Closely related to E. formosa, and has been considered conspecific with it. Geographical variation partly clinal, paler in N of range and darkest in S. Ten subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • E. e. intermedia (Dabbene & Lillo, 1913) – extreme S Bolivia and NW Argentina (N & C Salta S to NE Catamarca and W Tucumán).
  • E. e. magnistriata Olrog, 1959 – NW Argentina (E Tucumán and W Santiago del Estero S to E La Rioja and N & W Córdoba).
  • E. e. riojana Olrog, 1959 – WC Argentina (C La Rioja and N San Juan).
  • E. e. albida (Wetmore, 1921) – WC Argentina (lowlands in S San Juan, N Mendoza and W San Luis).
  • E. e. wetmorei Banks, 1977 – WC Argentina (foothills in NC Mendoza).
  • E. e. devia Conover, 1950 – SW Argentina (S Neuquén).
  • E. e. numida Banks, 1977 – C Argentina (S Córdoba to SE Mendoza and C & E La Pampa).
  • E. e. multiguttata Conover, 1950 – EC Argentina (E Córdoba, extreme SE La Pampa and Buenos Aires).
  • E. e. elegans I. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, 1832 – SC Argentina (C Córdoba S to N Neuquén and extreme W Buenos Aires S through Río Negro).
  • E. e. patagonica Conover, 1950 – S Argentina (S Neuquén and SW Río Negro to Chubut and Santa Cruz N of R Santa Cruz) and adjacent S Chile (Chile Chico area, in EC Aisén).
  • Descriptive notes

    37·5–41 cm; 683–712 g (magnistriata), 676–836 g (albida), 402–892 g (elegans), 600–800 g (patagonica).... read more


    Song rather insignificant, usually of three plain whistles, “wheu, whu whu”, first note... read more


    Arid and semi-arid grassland, dry savanna, open woodland, dry Andean steppe, bare hills with... read more

    Food and feeding

    Omnivorous. Plant matter includes ears and grains of Bromus and Hordeum, also fruits of Erodium cicutarium, ... read more


    Season Jun/Aug–Nov, most laying in Oct; sometimes two broods. Polyandry and/or polygyny the normal mating system. Nest made from... read more


    Moves over fairly large areas during winter months in search of food. Otherwise presumably... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Widespread and not rare; locally common to very common. In many areas, populations have declined appreciably owing to hunting, and... read more

    Recommended citation

    Cabot, J., Christie, D.A., Jutglar, F., Sharpe, C.J. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Elegant Crested Tinamou (Eudromia elegans). 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 17 February 2020).