Family Typical Antbirds (Thamnophilidae)

Least Concern

Spot-winged Antshrike (Pygiptila stellaris)


French: Batara étoilé German: Fleckenflügel-Ameisenwürger Spanish: Batará estrellado

Thamnophilus stellaris


, 1825,

Pará, Brazil


Proposed races maculipennis (S Colombia and NE Peru) and purusiana (W Brazil) based on plumage variations which appear to be clinal, so they are merged with nominate, pending further study. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. s. occipitalis J. T. Zimmer, 1932 – S Venezuela (W & S Bolívar, Amazonas), N Brazil (N of R Amazon E to R Branco) and adjacent extreme E Colombia E to S Guyana, Suriname and, locally French Guiana.
  • P. s. stellaris (Spix, 1825) – extreme S Colombia (near base of Andes), E Ecuador and NE & E Peru E through S Amazonian Brazil (S to Rondônia, N Mato Grosso, S Pará, W Maranhão), and S to NW & NE Bolivia.
  • Descriptive notes

    12–13 cm; 23–27 g. Bill heavy; tail short; white interscapular patch. Male has black crown; otherwise grey, darker above, except for some black feathers on centre... read more


    Loudsong rather short (e.g. 1·2 seconds), uncountable series of evenly spaced abrupt notes,... read more


    Canopy and subcanopy of lowland evergreen forest, to 700 m. Occurs in both terra firme and... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds on variety of lepidopteran larvae, also orthopterans, particularly large katydids (Tettigoniidae), mantids (Mantidae), and stick-... read more


    Little known. One previously unpublished description of nest-building in Brazil in Nov, also juvenile male following adult male in a flock... read more


    None recorded; presumed resident throughout range.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Considered to be generally common throughout most of its extensive range. This includes a number of large parks and reserves in most countries in... read more

    Recommended citation

    Zimmer, K. & Isler, M.L. (2020). Spot-winged Antshrike (Pygiptila stellaris). 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 19 February 2020).