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Version 1.0

This is a historic version of this account.  Current version


Spix's Spinetail Synallaxis spixi

Teresa Pegan
Version: 1.0 — Published July 13, 2012

Sounds and Vocal Behavior


The song of Spix's Spinetail variously is described as "a five syllable phrase, last four notes with bubbling quality: sweet! bee bee bee bee . . . . . .sweet! bee bee bee bee . . . .". " (Belton 1984) or as "a constantly repeated, fast whít, di-di-di" (Ridgley and Tudor 1994). Its song is similar to that of the Dark-breasted Spinetail (Synallaxis albigularis) which is geographically distant (Ridgley and Tudor 1994).

For a representative audio recording with sonogram, see audio

Bentereré, a name for this bird, is onomatopoeic (Sick 1993). The name "Chicli Spinetail", formerly applied to spixi by some authors (e.g. Meyer de Schauensee 1966), is onomatopoeic but does not accurately represent the vocalizations of Spix's Spinetail, and may have been used originally to describe Sooty-fronted Spinetail S. frontalis (Ridgley and Tudor 1994).

There apparently is sexual dimorphism in the vocalizations of a pair, with one bird calling "wat-TENneNENG," and the other "cheh, cheh, cheh, cheh" (Sick 1993).

Additional audio recordings of vocalizations of Spix's Spinetail can be heard at Macaulay Library, at xeno-canto, and at the Internet Bird Collection.

Nonvocal Sounds

None reported.

Recommended Citation

Pegan, T. (2012). Spix's Spinetail (Synallaxis spixi), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.spispi1.01