Family Antpittas (Grallariidae)

Least Concern

Scaled Antpitta (Grallaria guatimalensis)


French: Grallaire écaillée German: Kehlband-Ameisenpitta Spanish: Tororoí cholino

Grallaria guatimalensis


, 1842,



See also G. chthonia. Races carmelitae and sororia only doubtfully distinct from regulus; moreover, distributional limits of the last two in C & S Peru remain to be clarified. Race binfordi said to resemble ochraceiventris and often synonymized with it, but has vertical stripes on breast; binfordi has even been proposed for phylogenetic species rank#R, as also have races ochraceiventris and guatimalensis#R. Birds from N end of range described as race mexicana, but normally included in highly variable nominate race. Birds from Margarita I (NE Venezuela) may be a separate race#R; name schwartzii has been suggested, but this name has never been formally introduced#R. Authorship and date of species name recently corrected#R. Ten subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. g. ochraceiventris Nelson, 1898 – S Mexico from Jalisco E to W Hidalgo and from S Guerrero to S Oaxaca.
  • G. g. binfordi Dickerman, 1990 – SC Mexico (México, Distrito Federal, Morelos).
  • G. g. guatimalensis Lafresnaye, 1842 – E & S Mexico (from NW Veracruz and N Oaxaca) SE to N Nicaragua.
  • G. g. princeps P. L. Sclater & Salvin, 1869 – Costa Rica S to W Panama (Veraguas).
  • G. g. chocoensis Chapman, 1917 – E Panama (E Darién) and NW Colombia (Chocó).
  • G. g. carmelitae Todd, 1915 – N Colombia in Santa Marta Mts, and Sierra de Perijá S to N Boyacá.
  • G. g. regulus P. L. Sclater, 1860 – from N & SW Colombia (in N, on W slope of E Andes in S Cesar) and W Venezuela (both Andean slopes from Táchira to SE Lara) S to C Peru (Ucayali, in W, S to Cajamarca), including adjacent E lowlands to extreme E Ecuador.
  • G. g. aripoensis Hellmayr & Seilern, 1912 – Trinidad.
  • G. g. roraimae C. Chubb, 1921 – tepuis of S Venezuela, adjacent N Brazil and CW Guyana (Mt Roraima)#R; perhaps this form in NE Venezuela (Margarita I, Cerro Negro).
  • G. g. sororia Berlepsch & Stolzmann, 1901 – S Peru (from Cuzco) SE to C Bolivia (W Santa Cruz).
  • Descriptive notes

    16–18 cm; one male 94·6 g (guatimalensis), one female 95 g (chocoensis), male 69·5–86 g, one female 79·8 g (regulus/sororia),... read more


    Song of regulus 2·5–3·6 seconds long, at intervals of 15–30... read more


    Floor and lower storey of humid and wet foothill and montane forest, especially in ravines and... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds primarily on a variety of arthropods; a dragonfly (Odonata), a nematode (Nematoidea), medium-sized beetles and a millipede (Diplopoda... read more


    Egg-laying in Mexico in May, Jun (Oaxaca) and Aug (Chiapas); eggs and nestlings in Sept in Guatemala; five nests with eggs in Jun in El... read more


    Presumably sedentary.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Generally uncommon and somewhat local; in some areas (e.g. SW Ecuador) widespread and fairly common in disturbed and strongly fragmented habitat.... read more

    Recommended citation

    Krabbe, N.K. & Schulenberg, T.S. (2020). Scaled Antpitta (Grallaria guatimalensis). 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 24 February 2020).