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Version 1.0

This is a historic version of this account.  Current version


Black-crowned Antpitta Pittasoma michleri

Patrick O'Donnell
Version: 1.0 — Published September 26, 2014



Feeding: Black-crowned Antpitta forages in the leaf litter and occasionally digs with its bill in soft soils (Stiles and Skutch 1989). It also snatches up prey items flushed out of hiding by army ants (Willis 1985, Stiles and Skutch 1989).

Locomotion: It moves along the forest floor by hopping.

Singing: Black-crowned Antpitta may sing while standing on the forest floor but more typically sings from a horizontal branch a meter or less above the ground (Stiles and Skutch 1989).


There are no published data on territorial defense, maintenance, or fidelity for Black-crowned Antpitta.

Sexual Behavior

Not described, probably monogamous

Social and interspecific behavior

Black-crowned Antpittas typically forage alone (Stiles and Skutch 1989). They do not join mixed flocks but regularly forage at swarms of army ants, which often are attended by other bird species as well. On these occasions, antpittas dominate most other bird species at the antswarm (Willis 1985, Stiles and Skutch 1989).

On several occasions, Stripe-throated Hermit (Phaethornis striigularis) has been observed interacting with singing male Black-crowned Antpittas in an aggressive manner at Quebrada Gonzalez, Braulio Carrillo National Park, Costa Rica. While the male antpittas sang from understory perches, a single Stripe-throated Hermit repeatedly hovered in front of them and gave "sputtering" vocalizations, its behavior similar to the mobbing behavior exhibited by other hummingbird species when owls are encountered (P. O'Donnell, personal observations).


No reports of predation on Black-crowned Antpitta?

Recommended Citation

O'Donnell, P. (2014). Black-crowned Antpitta (Pittasoma michleri), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.blcant1.01