Diamantina Tapaculo Scytalopus diamantinensis has been described from the Chapada Diamantina, Bahia State, Brazil (Bornschein et al. 2007) and is now recognised by BirdLife in line with SACC (2008).
Bornschein et al. (2007) present nine points (tape recorded individuals or specimens) loosely restricted to four localities within the Chapada Diamantina, separated by up to 150 km. All records come from ‘campo rupestre’ vegetation, a mosaic of plant communities found above 800 m in the Serra do Espinhaço, of which the Chapada Diamantina is a part (Bornschein et al. 2007). This habitat continues to the south into Minas Gerais. Other species of the campo rupestre are currently classified as Near Threatened (except Cipó Canastero whose current status as Vulnerable but is under review for downlisting to NT), almost meeting criterion B1 because the total area of campo rupestre is estimated at just c. 10,000 km2. However, because Scytalopus diamantinensis is currently known from just four locations within a smaller range, Bornschein et al. (2007) recommend that it be classified as Vulnerable under B1a+b with an estimated Extent of Occurrence of less than 20,000 km2 (but more than 5,000 km2) at fewer than ten locations and a continuing decline in the extent and quality of available habitat. If this classification is agreed, it is worth pointing out that further research may reveal the species to be more widespread and common, and that its habitat is relatively stable; upland habitat is unlikely to be being rapidly encroached. If treated here as Vulnerable, further work in the future may lead to a revision of its status.
Comments on the species’s likely true distribution, and threats to its habitat are welcomed to inform this assessment.
Bornschein, M. R., Maurício, G. N., Lopes, R. B., Mata, H. and Bonatto, S. L. (2007) Diamantina Tapaculo, a new Scytalopus endemic to the Chapada Diamantina, northeastern Brazil (Passeriformes: Rhinocryptidae). Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia 15(2): 151-174.
(This discussion was started as part of the 2010 Red List update)