Ochre-fronted Antpitta Grallaricula ochraceifrons


Justification of Red List Category
This species is classified as Endangered because it has a very small range (it is known from just two locations) and its habitat is declining continuously (and rapidly) in one of the two areas.

Population justification
The population is estimated to number 250-999 individuals based on an assessment of known records, descriptions of abundance and range size. This is consistent with recorded population density estimates for congeners or close relatives with a similar body size, and the fact that only a proportion of the estimated Extent of Occurrence is likely to be occupied. This estimate is equivalent to 167-666 mature individuals, rounded here to 150-700 mature individuals.

Trend justification
This species is suspected to lose 1.1-39.7% of suitable habitat within its distribution over three generations (10 years) based on a model of Amazonian deforestation (Soares-Filho et al. 2006, Bird et al. 2011). Given the susceptibility of the species to fragmentation and/or edge effects, it is therefore suspected to decline by ≥30% over three generations.

Distribution and population

Grallaricula ochraceifrons was discovered in 1976, and is known from three localities in the east Andes of Amazonas and San Martín, north Peru  (Graves et al. 1983, Hornbuckle 1999). In the Garcia area below Abra Patricia, San Martín, two specimens were collected in 1976, and a female trapped in 1998. The Abra Patricia area has since been visited by numerous ornithologists, with nine further specimens collected there in 2002 (D. Lane in litt. 2002). In the Cordillera de Colán, Amazonas, two specimens were collected in 1976 (Ridgely and Tudor 1994, Hornbuckle 1999, J. Hornbuckle in litt. 1998). It was recorded near Yambrasbamba, Amazonas, in 2011. Recent surveys suggest that the species is generally uncommon (F. Angulo Pratolongo in litt. 2012).


It inhabits dense undergrowth of epiphyte-laden, humid cloud-forest (Graves et al. 1983), with records between 1,850-2,500 m (Ridgely and Tudor 1994, Hornbuckle 1999, D. Lane in litt. 2002, Schulenberg et al. 2007). It is extremely poorly known, owing mainly to a complete lack of field observations (Graves et al. 1983, Ridgely and Tudor 1994, J. Hornbuckle in litt. 1998) , although its voice has now been documented (D. Lane in litt. 2002, Schulenberg et al. 2007).


The remaining areas of suitable habitat are being cleared for timber, agriculture and to secure ownership of the land, gradually around Abra Patricia, but more rapidly in the Cordillera de Colán (Davies et al. 1997, Dillon and Sánchez Vega 1999, J. Hornbuckle in litt. 1998). More recent surveys have confirmed that habitat destruction in the region continues unabated, albeit more extensively at lower altitudes (Garcia-Moreno et al. 1997). Abra Patricia is under pressure owing to road improvements, recent immigration and population growth in the area (Garcia-Moreno et al. 1997, Hornbuckle 1999, J. Hornbuckle in litt. 1998). Mining activity around Yambrasbamba contributes to habitat destruction both directly and by encouraging road-building in the vicinity (F. Angulo Pratolongo in litt. 2012).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
It occurs near the Alto Mayo Protected Forest, San Martín, but it is unclear whether the high-elevation forests are protected under this designation (Dillon and Sánchez Vega 1999, Hornbuckle 1999) In any case, the protected status appears to have had little or no effect on the rate of deforestation (Dillon and Sánchez Vega 1999). The newly-designated Abra Patricia-Alto Nieva Private Conservation Area aims to protect this species and Xenoglaux loweri. The 392 km2 Cordillera de Colán National Sanctuary was created in 2009 (Krabbe et al. 2016).

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey areas of suitable habitat on each of the isolated ridges in the region. Conduct basic biological research on the species (Hornbuckle 1999). Enforce the protection of habitat in Alto Mayo Protected Forest, and ensure that high-altitude forest is included within its boundary (Dillon and Sánchez Vega 1999, Hornbuckle 1999).


10.5 cm. Small, predominantly brown antpitta. Ochraceous-buff forecrown and eye-ring are most obvious features of male (former lacking in female). Otherwise largely brown upperparts, and heavily black-streaked white underparts, with buff-tinged flanks. Similar spp. Peruvian Antpitta G. peruviana lacks ochraceous-buff forecrown and lores in male, and has buff lores in female. Ochre-breasted Antpitta G. flavirostris has an ochraceous loral spot, and has buff, rather than white, underparts which are scalloped rather than streaked. Voice Song similar to primary vocalisations of G. flavirostris and G. loricata: an emphatic, descending, sharply whistled whéeu!, given repeatedly at intervals of 6–12 seconds for a period of up to several minutes (C. J. Sharpe in litt. 2016).


Text account compilers
Isherwood, I., Pople, R., Sharpe, C J, Stuart, T., Symes, A. & Khwaja, N.

Hornbuckle, J., Lane, D. & Angulo Pratolongo, F.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2021) Species factsheet: Grallaricula ochraceifrons. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/02/2021. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2021) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/02/2021.