Highland Tinamou (Nothocercus bonapartei)

The Highland Tinamou bird, scientific name Nothocercus bonapartei, is a species found in the high-altitude Andean forests of South America, spanning across Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. These birds prefer to thrive in moist, mountainous environments at elevations between 1,500 and 3,800 meters. They can be difficult to spot due to their shy and secretive nature. These birds are plump and have a large body, short legs, a small crest at the top of their head, and a short, round tail.

Highland Tinamous are polygamous birds, meaning that they mate with multiple partners over time. They are ground-dwelling birds and prefer to stay hidden among the undergrowth and dense vegetation. They like to feed on seeds, fruit, insects, and small invertebrates found on the forest floor. The bird's diets consist of berries, fallen fruits, and a wide variety of small invertebrates. Highland Tinamous are monomorphic in plumage meaning that both male and female are similar in coloration.

One of the Highland Tinamou's most intriguing features is the male's call, which is described as a low, mournful, and haunting whistle. Males use a series of calls to attract females and mark their territory. The females usually lay two to four eggs in a shallow scrape in the ground, often with some leaf litter and debris to help camouflage the nest. Both male and female birds share the responsibilities of incubating the eggs and raising the hatchlings.

Unfortunately, Highland Tinamous are threatened by habitat destruction due to deforestation and human development. They are also hunted for their meat and feathers, and they have a low reproductive rate, making them particularly vulnerable to population decline. Conservation efforts have been made to preserve the Highland Tinamou and their habitat, including creating protected areas and promoting sustainable land use practices.

Overall, the Highland Tinamou bird is an intriguing and unique inhabitant of the Andean forests of South America. These plump birds are shy and elusive, with a haunting call that echoes through the mountains. It is essential to continue conservation efforts to protect these endangered birds and preserve their natural habitat.

Other names

Nothocercus bonapartei



Highland Tinamou

tinamú de Bonaparte



bonaparteov tinamu

tinama horská




Tinamou de Bonaparte


Tinamo delle alture


Bonaparto notocerkas


kusacz górski


Горный нотоцеркус

Planinski tinamu

tinama horská

Tinamú serrano


Bonaparte Tinamusu

тинаму бурий