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Version 1.0

This is a historic version of this account.  Current version


Scaled Ground-Cuckoo Neomorphus squamiger

Janice M. Hughes
Version: 1.0 — Published June 29, 2018


Distribution in the Americas

Scaled Ground-Cuckoo is endemic to small area of lower tropical, southern Amazonia, specifically the Pará subregion in central Brazil (Stotz et al. 1996, Erritzøe et al. 2012). It occurs on the south side of the Amazon River on both banks of the lower Rio Tapajós, at least as far west as Parintins (Haffer 1977, Firme et al. 2014), and east to the east bank of the Rio Xingu (Graves and Zusi 1990, Firme et al. 2014). Most of the known localities are relatively close to the Amazon, but recent records extend the range as far south as the upper Tapajós drainage in northern Mato Grosso (Lees et al. 2013, Firme et al. 2014).

Distribution outside the Americas

Endemic to South America. Nonmigratory.


Scaled Ground-Cuckoo occurs on the ground in tropical Amazonian evergreen lowland forest (Parker et al. 1996).

Historical changes

Poorly known, especially as the distributional limits of Scaled Ground-Cuckoo still are imperfectly known (see Distribution). Its range probably has contracted along the eastern and southern margins due to advancing deforestation, but this has not been conclusively documented.

Fossil history

No fossils have been found. However, Scaled Ground-Cuckoo is thought to have originated in the Rondonia area of the Amazon during the Quaternary or late Tertiary when a substantial sea-level rise may have fragmented the Amazonian lowlands to produce several islands and archipelagos between the Tapajós and Xingu rivers (Brazil), thus, favoring active allopatric speciation (Nores 1999).

Distribution of the Scaled Ground-Cuckoo - Range Map
  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding
Distribution of the Scaled Ground-Cuckoo

Recommended Citation

Hughes, J. M. (2018). Scaled Ground-Cuckoo (Neomorphus squamiger), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.scgcuc1.01