Cotingas (Cotingidae)

Elegant Mourner (Laniisoma elegans) - HBW 9, p. 76

French: Cotinga élégant German: Schwarzkappenkotinga Spanish: Cotinga Elegante
Other common names: Shrike/Shrike-like Cotinga; Buckley’s Mourner, Andean Laniisoma (Andean races)

Taxonomy: Ampelis elegans Thunberg, 1823, mountains of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Phylogenetic affinities uncertain. Traditionally included within present family, but recent analysis of morphology indicated possible relationship with genera currently placed in Pipridae (Schiffornis) and Tyrannidae (Laniocera, Xenopsaris, Pachyramphus), possibly also with cotingid genus Iodopleura; further research required. Andean races (venezuelense, buckleyi, cadwaladeri) often treated as a separate species, but no apparent vocal differences from nominate and plumage differences considered minor. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • venezuelense Phelps, Sr & Gilliard, 1941 - foothills of E Andes in W Venezuela (Táchira, Barinas) and Colombia (Boyacá).
  • buckleyi (P. L. Sclater & Salvin, 1880) - foothills of Andes in Ecuador and Peru.
  • cadwaladeri Carriker, 1935 - foothills of Andes in NW Bolivia (La Paz).
  • elegans (Thunberg, 1823) - SE Brazil (S Bahia S to São Paulo and E Paraná).