Family Woodpeckers (Picidae)

Least Concern

Spotted Piculet (Picumnus pygmaeus)


French: Picumne ocellé German: Fleckenzwergspecht Spanish: Carpinterito ocelado

Picus pygmaeus

M. H. C. Lichtenstein

, 1823,

Brazil = Bahia


Includes proposed race distinctus. Monotypic.


E Brazil from C Maranhão and Piauí E to Pernambuco, and S to NE Goiás and extreme N Minas Gerais.

Descriptive notes

10 cm. Distinctive with dark plumage spotted with white. Male has top of head black, forecrown with broad red feather tips forming solid patch, rest of crown and nape spotted... read more


Distinctive, very high-pitched, squeaky “tsirrrrr, tsi, tsi, tsi”.


Dry and open woodland and dense shrubs (caatinga), at up to 750m.

Food and feeding

No information available.


Virtually no information. Nest building recorded in Dec; female feeding a grown chick recorded in Oct.


Presumably resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. A poorly known species. No information on numbers. Probably uncommon, or overlooked.

Recommended citation

Winkler, H., Christie, D.A. & Bonan, A. (2020). Spotted Piculet (Picumnus pygmaeus). 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 20 January 2020).