Family Ovenbirds (Furnariidae)

Least Concern

Little Thornbird (Phacellodomus sibilatrix)


French: Synallaxe siffleur German: Zwergbündelnister Spanish: Espinero chico

Phacellodomus sibilatrix

P. L. Sclater

, 1879,

no locality = presumably Córdoba, Argentina


Sister to P. striaticeps (which see). Monotypic.


Extreme S Bolivia (SW Santa Cruz), W Paraguay, N Argentina (S to E La Rioja, N San Luis, C Córdoba and N Buenos Aires) and SW Uruguay; recently recorded as breeding in extreme SW Rio Grande do Sul, S Brazil#R.

Descriptive notes

13–14 cm; 14–16 g. The smallest Phacellodomus. Has broad dull buff-whitish supercilium extending anteriorly to supraloral area, vague narrow dull brown... read more


Song variable, described as a series of shrill, well-spaced “cheep” notes, slightly... read more


Tropical deciduous forest, Chaco woodland and scrub; from near sea-level to 2000 m.

Food and feeding

Recorded dietary items are Coleoptera, spiders, Orthoptera, Formicidae. Observed in pairs or in small groups (possibly nest helpers),... read more


Season during austral spring-summer; eggs in Sept–Feb and nestlings in Oct in Argentina. Presumably monogamous. Nest a cone-shaped... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common to uncommon in much of its range. Occurs in Chancani Natural Reserve, in Argentina.

Recommended citation

Remsen, J.V., Jr (2020). Little Thornbird (Phacellodomus sibilatrix). 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 February 2020).