Account navigation Account navigation
Welcome to Birds of the World!
You are currently viewing one of the free accounts available in our complimentary tour of Birds of the World. In this courtesy review, you can access all the life history articles and the multimedia galleries associated with this account.
For complete access to all accounts, a subscription is required.
Black-crowned Antpitta is a spectacular species of antpitta restricted to a narrow elevational belt in the Caribbean foothills from northeastern Costa Rica south to northwestern Colombia. Long considered an antpitta within the antbird family Formicariidae, genetic studies now indicate that the genus Pittasoma is closely aligned with gnateaters in the Conopaphagidae. Pittasoma antpittas are much larger than gnateaters; Black-crowned Antpitta is uniquely plumaged with a black crown and throat, and heavily black-and-white scalloped underparts. This antpitta usually is encountered as solitary individuals attending swarms of army ant, but sometimes is found as pairs in the forest understory. Its presence usually indicated by an explosive alarm call, whack-whack-whack-whack, of up to 10-12 notes. Black-crowned Antpitta is little known in Colombia, but regularly is seen in the adjacent Darien Province of Panama.