Recently discovered species, described in 1974 in Argentina. Endemic to south-eastern Patagonia.
Resident to uplands of western Santa Cruz, in diverse very windy pre-Andean plateaus of eastern Argentinian Patagonia.
Alone or in pairs. Occasional, scarcely recorded in Magallanes province, Chile. Nests colonially, sometimes seen in mixed flocks with several Silvery Grebe. This species breeds on a few basaltic lakes in the interior of Santa Cruz, extreme south-west Argentina. Excellent diver, curious.
Critically Endangered (CR), This species has a very small and extremely rapidly declining population within a very small range.
A Patagonian endemic Tinamou of large and robust body, this species has a restricted range in Patagonian steppe from the coast of the Straits of Magellan to the windy plateaus of western Argentinian Patagonia. Very rare, scarcely recorded in eastern sector of Magallanes province in Chile.
It inhabits steppe shrublands, especially with Lepidophyllum, Junellia, Berberis sp., and open wind-swept areas.
Small groups and flocks up to 40 individuals in non-breeding season during the southern winter, when it shelters from the snow in small caves. Alarm call is a characteristic whistle.
Runs rapidly, with its body in an upright position, flies only when threatened, with loud, heavy and strong wing-beats. The chicks remain in the care of the male. Shy.
Magellanic Plover, Pluvianellus socialis is the sole member of family Pluvianellidae, and despite its name it is not really related to true Plovers, Charadriidae, but closer to Chionidae, the Sheathbills. However, it wasn’t until 1975 that it was separated from Plovers and placed into its own monotypic family, Pluvianellidae and genus, Pluvianellus.
Some authors have suggested placing it within the Sheathbill family, but several morphological and behavioural traits separate it from that group, such as the use of a crop to carry food to the chicks, the slight asymmetry of the bill, and the use of the feet to dig in the ground for food.
A medium-sized shorebird, the shape of its body recalls a small dove or seedsnipe more than a plover. Generally found along the shores of shallow saline lakes and lagoons with rocky and muddy shores, very exposed to the wind, with variable water levels. Also on rocky coasts, especially during migration periods.
It can be easily overlooked due to its extremely cryptic colouration, especially as it blends with the pebbles that are commonly part of their habitat, and finding it usually involves a fair amount of time and patience, trying to discern its minute shape among vast extensions of pebbles and stones in the shores of Patagonian water bodies.
Territorial, normally in pairs or family groups. Also associates with other plovers and sandpipers, like Two-banded Plover, Rufous-chested Dotterel and Baird’s and White-rumped Sandpipers. Forms flocks during migration and winter.
Endemic to Patagonia, local and partially resident in the extreme south of Chile and Argentina, in Chile restricted to Magallanes district, and it is classified as Near Threatened (NT) in the IUCN Red List.
A blaze of green and red against the stark winter white, an Austral Parakeet Enicognathus ferrugineus feeds on the seeds of a short bush that sticks out through the snow blanket in the shore of the Straits of Magellan near Punta Arenas in Chilean Patagonia. Southernmost of all parrots in the world, it is found to the very tip of the South American continent.
Tail cocked in an alert posture, a Magellanic Oystercatcher, Haematopus leucopodus guards over its breeding territory in the middle of the patagonian steppe of Pali Aike National Park in Magallanes, Chile, a Guanaco in the background. One of the three southern cone oystercatchers, it is the only one to leave the coast for the inland plains, especially in breeding season.
Approaching its nest located inside a crevasse in the rocks, a Puna Ground Tyrant, Muscisaxicola juninensis briefly pauses on top of a boulder with a beakful of insect prey that will be fed to its offspring. One of the highest-living tyrant flycatchers, it is found in the high Andes above 3,500m above sea level.
Surveying from an advantage perch, a Fire-eyed Diucon Xolmis pyrope waits for any flying insects coming across its field of view, ready to take off and snatch its prey in mid-air before returning to its watching post by the edge of a Nothofagus forest patch in Magallanes, chilean Patagonia. One of the relatively common southern cone Tyrant flycatchers, it excels in sally-gleaning and can be readily identified by its general grey colours and striking bright-red eye.
Carefully looking for any movement betraying the presence of its insect prey, a Puna Plover Charadrius alticola makes a dash run for a tiny mosquito in the seemingly barren vastness of the Atacama Salt Lake near San Pedro de Atacama in Antofagasta, Chile. The highest-living plover, it is found only in high-altitude lakes in the Andean plateau between 3000 and 5000m.