Family Ovenbirds (Furnariidae)

Least Concern

Red-shouldered Spinetail (Synallaxis hellmayri)


French: Synallaxe de Hellmayr German: Rotschulter-Dickichtschlüpfer Spanish: Pijuí de Hellmayr

Synallaxis hellmayri


, 1905,

Fazenda Serra, Rio Grande, Bahia, Brazil


Previously placed in monotypic genus Gyalophylax, and was at one time placed in Asthenes, on basis of perceived resemblances; but shown by genetic data#R to be embedded within Synallaxis. Originally named Synallaxis griseiventris, but that name was preoccupied. Monotypic.


E Brazil (Piauí, W Pernambuco, N Bahia, extreme N Minas Gerais).

Descriptive notes

18–19 cm; 25–26 g. Superficially like other spinetails, but subtle differences include wedge-shaped bill. Male has crown, back and upperparts uniform fuscous... read more


Song a loud, fast, accelerating series that fades towards end, 3·5–4·5 seconds... read more


Arid, scrubby deciduous woodland (e.g. caatingaarbustiva densa”),... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly arthropods; recorded dietary items are spiders, Coleoptera, Orthoptera, also seeds. Forages usually in pairs, generally on ground or... read more


Season probably Oct–Apr; eggs in Oct and fledglings in Jan. Presumably monogamous. One nest described, a large mass 50–100 cm... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Restricted-range species: present in North-east Brazilian Caatinga EBA. Locally common and fairly widespread within range. Only... read more

Recommended citation

Remsen, J.V., Jr (2019). Red-shouldered Spinetail (Synallaxis hellmayri). 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 7 December 2019).