Bahia Tyrannulet Phylloscartes beckeri


Justification of Red List Category
This species has a very small and severely fragmented range. The populations in the fragments are likely to be extirpated in the very near future unless immediate action is taken. The species is therefore likely to be declining and is listed as Endangered.

Population justification
The species is likely to have a population exceeding 2,500 mature individuals (L. F. Silveira in litt. 2012), and so it is placed in the band 2,500-9,999 mature individuals. This equates to 3,750-14,999 individuals in total, rounded here to 3,500-15,000 individuals.

Trend justification
A rapid and ongoing population decline is suspected owing to rates of habitat loss.

Distribution and population

Phylloscartes beckeri is only known from seven localities in Bahia (Parrini et al. 1999, Silveira et al. 2005, Bencke et al. 2006) and two in Minas Gerais (Ribon et al. 2004, Ribon et al. 2005), Brazil. In 1992, it was discovered near Boa Nova in the Serra da Ouricana but no more than 10 pairs have been found in these remnant forest fragments (Gonzaga and Pacheco 1995). It has subsequently been found in two discrete areas of Chapada da Diamantina National Park in central Bahia (Parrini et al. 1999) and at Serra das Lontras (Silveira et al. 2005), and recently at Fazenda Duas Barras in Santa Maria do Salto municipality (Ribon et al. 2004) and at Mata da Balbina in Bandeira (Ribon et al. 2005), both in northeast Minas Gerais. Chapada da Diamantina clearly holds the bulk of the population, but it is also common in Serra Bonita Private Reserve and Amargosa, all in Bahia (L. F. Silveira in litt. 2012).


It occurs at 800-1,200 m in montane Atlantic forest, perhaps favouring taller forests and mature secondary habitats (Gonzaga and Pacheco 1995, Parrini et al. 1999). It forages for arthropods in the canopy, where it is found in pairs or small family groups (Gonzaga and Pacheco 1995, Parrini et al. 1999).


In the Serra da Ouricana, forests have virtually disappeared owing to the expansion of pastureland and cultivation. Only a few privately-owned tracts of forest remain, and these are under pressure from clearance and fires spreading out of cultivated areas (Gonzaga and Pacheco 1995, Gonzaga et al. 1995). By 1999, the largest remaining patch of c.3 km2 had been largely destroyed and the long-term survival of this species in the area is highly questionable (J. M. Goerck in litt. 1999). Illegal charcoal burning and forest clearance has been observed in Chapada da Diamantina National Park, where the sight of logging trucks is not uncommon (Parrini et al. 1999).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
Considered Endangered in Brazil (Silveira & Straube 2008, MMA 2014). It has been recorded in Chapada da Diamantina National Park but this does not provide de facto protection (Parrini et al. 1999). It is well-protected at Serra Bonita Private Reserve (L. F. Silveira in litt. 2012).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey areas of potentially suitable habitat between Boa Nova and Chapada Diamantina. Assess the population in Chapada da Diamantina National Park. Research its ecological requirements. Ensure the de facto protection of Chapada da Diamantina and surrounding forests. Investigate the feasibility of protecting remaining forest fragments near Boa Nova and in the Serra das Lontras.


12 cm. Small, greenish flycatcher. Olive-green upperparts with faint grey in centre of crown. Narrow, buff eye-ring and supraloral stripe. Short, creamy postocular eyebrow. Yellowish auriculars with narrow dusky crescents. Whitish-yellow throat and breast. Pale yellow centre of belly. Sides of belly tinged olivaceous. Two yellowish wing-bars and greenish fringes to flight feathers. Similar spp. Allopatric Mottle-cheeked P. ventralis and Restinga Tyrannulet P. kronei. Voice Complex, soft twittery song, and tik contact notes.


Text account compilers
Mazar Barnett, J., Pople, R., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A., Khwaja, N.

Goerck, J., Develey, P., Silveira, L., De Luca, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Phylloscartes beckeri. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/04/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/04/2021.