White-streaked Antvireo Dysithamnus leucostictus


Justification of Red List category

This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km² combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
The population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as uncommon to locally common (Stotz et al. 1996, Zimmer et al. 2020).

Trend justification
The population trend has not been estimated directly. Forest loss over the past ten years within the range has been very low (potentially <2%; Global Forest Watch 2020). The species is highly forest-dependent, and population declines may be exacerbated by habitat degradation, so that the rate of population decline might exceed the rate of forest loss. Nevertheless, population declines are unlikely to surpass 10% over ten years.

Distribution and population

Dysithamnus leucostictus has two separate ranges in north-west South America, and is generally uncommon (del Hoyo et al. 2003). Subspecies tucuyensis is endemic to northern Venezuela, occurring in the coastal mountains from Falcón and Lara to Monagas. This taxon is present in Henri Pittier National Park; it is most regularly found near Rancho Grande Biological Station in Aragua, and is now rare near Caripe (del Hoyo et al. 2003, Hilty 2003, Zimmer et al. 2020). It has recently been recorded on the Tafelberg plateau in central Suriname (O. Ottema in litt. 2020). The nominate subspecies leucostictus is found in the east Andes, ranging from Meta in central Colombia, southwards through east Ecuador to northern Amazonas and Cajamarca in extreme north Peru (del Hoyo et al. 2003, Zimmer et al. 2020).


The species is restricted to the understory of undisturbed montane forest (Zimmer et al. 2020). In Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, the species is found at 900-2,000 m, in Venezuela at 500-1,900 m and above 780 m in Suriname (O. Ottema in litt. 2020, Zimmer et al. 2020). It forages in pairs or alone, usually within 2 m of the ground in dense tangles of vegetation. The diet of this species is not well known, but it is likely to consist of insects, such as katydids and stick-insects, and other arthropods. It is sometimes associated with mixed species flocks. It is thought likely to breed between August and December, and the only published record of a nest comes from August (del Hoyo et al. 2003).


The only threat known to this species is habitat loss. It appears to be restricted to little-disturbed primary forest, and as such is likely to be particularly susceptible to fragmentation and edge effects (del Hoyo et al. 2003, A. Lees in litt. 2011, Zimmer et al. 2020). However, large parts of the range are to date largely unaffected by logging (Global Forest Watch 2020, O. Ottema in litt. 2020).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
The nominate race is found in Podocarpus, Sumaco-Galeras and Sangay National Parks, in Ecuador, while subspecies tucuyensis is protected by Terepaima, San Esteban, Henri Pittier, Macarao, El Avila, Guatopo and El Guácharo National Parks, Pico Codazzi Nature Monument and Central Suriname Nature Reserve (O. Ottema in litt. 2020, Zimmer et al. 2020).

Conservation Actions Proposed

Expand the protected area network to effectively protect IBAs. Effectively resource and manage existing and new protected areas, utilising emerging opportunities to finance protected area management with the joint aims of reducing carbon emissions and maximizing biodiversity conservation. Conservation on private lands, through expanding market pressures for sound land management and preventing forest clearance on lands unsuitable for agriculture, is also essential (Soares-Filho et al. 2006).


12-13 cm. Small, short-tailed, dimorphic antbird. Male dark grey, blackest on breast, with white tips and edges to wing-coverts. Female reddish brown above, with grey underparts streaked white. No streaking on lower belly, Reddish brown vent. Similar spp. The male could be mistaken for a male Plain Antvireo D. mentalis, but is larger and uniformly dark above and below. Male Slaty Antwren Myrmotherula schisticolor is also smaller. Voice Song is a loud, countable series of whistled notes, falling in pitch (Zimmer et al. 2020).


Text account compilers
Hermes, C.

Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Khwaja, N., Lees, A., Ottema, O., Sharpe, C.J. & Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Dysithamnus leucostictus. Downloaded from on 04/03/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 04/03/2024.