Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Pale-eyed Pygmy-tyrant (Atalotriccus pilaris)


French: Microtyran coiffé German: Blassaugen-Zwergtyrann Spanish: Mosquerito ojiblanco

C[olopterus]. pilaris


, 1847,

Cartagena, Bolívar, Colombia


Race venezuelensis only marginally distinct from nominate; perhaps better merged. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. p. wilcoxi Griscom, 1924 – Pacific slope of W Panama (Chiriquí E to Canal Zone).
  • A. p. pilaris (Cabanis, 1847) – N Colombia (Bolívar E to Guajira, S to Huila and Meta) and NW Venezuela (Zulia, NW Táchira).
  • A. p. venezuelensis Ridgway, 1906 – N Venezuela from Falcón E to Sucre, and in llanos from W Apure E to Monagas.
  • A. p. griseiceps (Hellmayr, 1911) – E Colombia (E Vichada), EC Venezuela (N Amazonas, N Bolívar, Delta Amacuro), and W Guyana and adjacent N Brazil (NE Roraima).
  • Descriptive notes

    9·7 cm; 6 g. Nominate race is olive above, head side buffy, lores whitish; wings dusky, two yellow wingbars, flight-feathers narrowly edged yellow, outer four primaries... read more


    Very loud for size of bird; dry “tic” notes alone, or sometimes combined with trills as “tic-... read more


    Drier scrub-woodland, thickets, open woodland, also moister deciduous and semi-deciduous woodland,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects. Forages alone or in pairs, sometimes with mixed-species flocks, low in dense vegetation. Makes short upward strikes (73% of... read more


    Nests found in Jun–Jul in Venezuela; adults in breeding condition or young fledglings virtually throughout year. Often makes audible... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to locally fairly common; generally common in Venezuela. Reports from extreme N Brazil (around R Cotingo and R Urucury, in N Roraima)... read more

    Recommended citation

    Clock, B. (2019). Pale-eyed Pygmy-tyrant (Atalotriccus pilaris). 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 10 December 2019).