Family Typical Antbirds (Thamnophilidae)

Least Concern

Sooty Antbird (Hafferia fortis)


French: Alapi fuligineux German: Schwarzgrau-Ameisenvogel Spanish: Hormiguero tiznado

Percnostola fortis

P. L. Sclater and Salvin

, 1868,

Pebas and Chayahuitas, Loreto, Peru


Closely related to H. zeledoni and H. immaculata#R. Race incanescens doubtfully distinct; alleged darker lower mandible based on incorrect statement that this was yellow in nominate race. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • H. f. fortis (P. L. Sclater & Salvin, 1868) – S Colombia (extreme E Cauca, extreme E Nariño, Caquetá, Putumayo, Amazonas), E Ecuador, E Peru, W Amazonian Brazil (S of R Amazon, W of R Madeira) and NW Bolivia (Pando and La Paz W of R Beni).
  • H. f. incanescens (Todd, 1927) – Tonantins, on R Solimões in W Amazonas, Brazil.
  • Descriptive notes

    17 cm; 42–48 g. Bare periorbital area wide, light blue. Male is very dark grey, blackest on head, wings tinged brown; white line around bend of wing; iris red. Female... read more


    Loudsong a series of similar, resonant, slightly downslurred whistles (e.g. 11 notes, 2·8... read more


    Understorey and floor of lowland and foothill evergreen forest and adjacent mature second-growth... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds on variety of insects and other arthropods, many of which obtained when flushed by army-ant swarms. Recorded prey in Brazil include... read more


    Not well known. Two nests in SE Peru (Madre de Dios) in Sept–Oct; gonadal condition of females and sightings of fledglings or... read more


    Presumed resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to fairly common throughout most of its range. Regions in which it occurs include a number of large protected areas, e.g. Yasuní National... read more

    Recommended citation

    Zimmer, K. & Isler, M.L. (2020). Sooty Antbird (Hafferia fortis). 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 25 February 2020).