Tapaculos (Rhinocryptidae)

Elegant Crescentchest (Melanopareia elegans) - HBW 8, p. 787

French: Cordon-noir élégant German: Kleiner Schmuckbandvogel Spanish: Pecholuna Elegante

Taxonomy: Synallaxis elegans Lesson, 1844, Guayaquil, west Ecuador.
Genus differs considerably from other members of family, though shows certain structural similarities with Teledromas (see page 748). May form a superspecies with M. maranonica. Vocally very similar to latter, and sometimes considered conspecific, but has proportionally shorter tail and distinct plumage pattern, and is geographically isolated. Birds from S Ecuador (Loja) are probably intergrades between nominate race and paucalensis. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • elegans (Lesson, 1844) - W Ecuador (S from Manabí and extreme S Pichincha).
  • paucalensis (Taczanowski, 1884) - Pacific NW Peru S to La Libertad.