Family Ovenbirds (Furnariidae)

Least Concern

Sharp-billed Canastero (Asthenes pyrrholeuca)


French: Synallaxe vannier German: Dünnschnabelcanastero Spanish: Canastero coludo
Other common names: Lesser Canastero

Sylvia pyrrholeuca


, 1817,



Molecular data#R#R show this species to be sister to A. moreirae. Proposed Argentinian races leptasthenuroides (of which affinis is a synonym), described from Tucumán, and flavogularis, from Bahía Blanca (Buenos Aires) and Santa Cruz, represent seasonal plumage variation within race sordida and nominate, respectively; name leptasthenuroides, however, may merit further investigation#R. See also A. heterura. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. p. sordida (Lesson, 1839) – C & S Chile (Aconcagua S to Aisén, also sight records from Magallanes) and WC Argentina (S Mendoza, Neuquén, W Río Negro); some migrate N to NW Argentina and S Bolivia.
  • A. p. pyrrholeuca (Vieillot, 1817) – C & S Argentina (SW Santiago del Estero, NE Córdoba, and from S La Pampa and SW Buenos Aires S to S Santa Cruz); some migrate N to E & NE Argentina, S Paraguay and S Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    14–15 cm; 12–14 g. Rather typical canastero without distinctive features, but bill relatively thin and pointed. Has rather plain grey-brown face, indistinct paler... read more


    Song a 2-note trill, “tsee-ee-ee-ee, tsee-ee-ee-ee”, repeated at 1-second intervals; contact call a... read more


    Arid montane scrub, arid lowland scrub, southern temperate grassland; dense arid scrub, shrub-... read more

    Food and feeding

    Recorded dietary items are Hemiptera (Membracidae) and Coleoptera (Carabidae, Chrysomelidae). Forages solitarily or in pairs, and often in... read more


    Season during austral spring-summer; eggs in Sept–Dec, nestlings in Nov and fledglings in Feb; possibly double-brooded. Presumably... read more


    Partly resident; an unknown proportion of population migrates N during austral winter, reaching S... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common to abundant in most of range. Habitat typically subjected to at least moderate grazing pressure.

    Recommended citation

    Remsen, J.V., Jr (2020). Sharp-billed Canastero (Asthenes pyrrholeuca). 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 28 January 2020).