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The localised Dwarf Vireo is endemic to southwestern Mexico, where it ranges, somewhat sparsely, from eastern Jalisco south to Oaxaca, and is principally found in semi-arid scrubby country or streamside vegetation. Very little is known concerning most facets of the biology of this vireo. It has a dark gray crown, with a slightly spectacled appearance, white fringes to the wing feathers, and pale grayish white underparts. Like many vireos, Dwarf Vireo is perhaps most likely to be first located by its repetitively given song, especially as it generally keeps low above the ground while foraging and is somewhat secretive in its behavior. The scientific name of Dwarf Vireo, nelsoni, commemorates the first president of the American Ornithologists' Union, Edward William Nelson.