Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

White-bellied Tyrannulet (Serpophaga munda)

Following the taxonomy applied to HBW Alive, derived from the HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World, this taxon is now lumped within White-crested Tyrannulet (Serpophaga subcristata).


French: Tyranneau à ventre blanc German: Weißbauch-Kleintyrann Spanish: Piojito Ventriblanco
Other common names: Grey-crowned Tyrannulet (“S. griseiceps”)

Serpophaga munda


, 1893,

Samaipata, Santa Cruz, Bolivia


Taxonomic status controversial; sometimes considered a race of S. subcristata, but the two differ in plumage, also slightly in voice, and in Argentina are narrowly parapatric with limited hybridization; further study needed. Described taxon S. griseiceps, from Bolivia (Cochabamba), with reduced white in crown and more buffish wingbars, widely believed to be based on juvenile specimens of present species, and thus treated as synonym of it, but now considered by some to represent a separate species on grounds of voice, plumage and distribution; further research required. Monotypic.


Breeds in Andes of W Bolivia (S from La Paz) and W Argentina (S to Neuquén and W Rio Negro); migrates E, as far as coast in SE Brazil and Uruguay, and as far N as NC Bolivia (S Beni).

Descriptive notes

11·5 cm; 4·5–9 g. A grey-and-white version of S. subcristata. Has thin white supercilium from bill to just behind eye, white broken eyering, thin... read more


Song, during which tail shaken vigorously, a soft, mechanical rattle beginning with a few... read more


Semi-arid montane scrub, thorn-forest, and deciduous woodland in foothills and highlands, to 2900 m... read more

Food and feeding

Insects. Very active, parulid-like tyrannulet, pausing only briefly while flitting through outer edges of scrubby vegetation, frequently... read more


Sept–Jan in Argentina. Nest built by both sexes, taking 4–7 days, a neat, tightly constructed open cup, outside diameter 5... read more


Descends to lower elevations and moves N & E into Chaco and Patagonian lowlands during austral... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Fairly common to common; rare breeder in Paraguayan Chaco. Recorded at Beni Biosphere Reserve, in Bolivia.

Recommended citation

Fitzpatrick, J. (2019). White-bellied Tyrannulet (Serpophaga munda). 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 21 May 2019).