Birds of the World – Furnariidae – Ovenbird Family

White-eyed Foliage-gleaner (Automolus leucophthalmus) by Dario Sanches

White-eyed Foliage-gleaner (Automolus leucophthalmus) by Dario Sanches

And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the LORD your God. (Leviticus 19:10 KJV)

Yesterday you were introduced to the Firewood-gatherer from the Ovenbird – Furnariidae Family. Let’s look at some more things about this family. There are presently (IOC 3.3) 307 species assigned together, but it is such a diverse group. There are over 70 Genera listed. Number one, the Ovenbird, is not even a member of this family. You have to look for it in the Parulidae – New World Warblers to find it.

The Ovenbird name seems to be from the fact that many of these birds make an “oven style” nest or at least one that has an opening to enter or a covering, not the “cup type” of nest of many birds. Most are  insectivores that are mostly arboreal in nature. Insects form the majority of the diet, with some spiders, centipides, millipides and even lizards being taken as well.

They are sub-divided into subfamilies which help find them. It is the names of these birds that have caught my attention this time. Listen to these names:

Tawny-throated Leaftosser (Sclerurus mexicanus) by Michael Woodruff

Tawny-throated Leaftosser (Sclerurus mexicanus) by Michael Woodruff

Subfamily: Sclerurinae ~~ Miners and Leaftossers

Wedge-billed Woodcreeper (Glyphorynchus spirurus) by Michael Woodruff

Wedge-billed Woodcreeper (Glyphorynchus spirurus) by Michael Woodruff

Subfamily: Dendrocolaptinae ~~ Woodcreepers

  • Tribe: Sittasomini – “intermediate” woodcreepers
  • Tribe: Dendrocolaptini – “strong-billed” woodcreepers and scythebills
Rufous Hornero (Furnarius rufus) ©WikiC

Rufous Hornero (Furnarius rufus) ©WikiC

Subfamily: Furnariinae ~~ Neotropical ovenbirds and allies

  • Xenops and Palmcreeper
  • Tribe Pygarrhichini – Treerunner, Xenops, Earthcreeper
  • Tribe Furnariini – Horneros and allies (Tuftedcheeks, Barbtail, Earthcreeper, Cinclodes, Streamcreeper, Rushbird, Reedhaunter)
  • Tribe Philydorini – Foliage-gleaners and allies (Xenops, Treehunter, Canebrake, Woodhaunter)
  • Tribe Synallaxini – Spinetails and allies (Treerunners, Barbtails, Rayaditos, Wiretail, Canasteros, Reedhaunter,Softtails, Thorntails, Firewood-gatherer, Brushrunner, Prickletail, Plushcrown, Graytails, Graveteiro)

Just reading the names you can almost image what they do. Many of them are “creepers,” “runners,” “gleaners,” “haunters,” and then others have their tail described. The tails are Barb, Spine, Wire, Soft, Thorn, Prickle and Gray. The Runners are apparently running up Trees or in the Stream. Not sure what the Miners are digging for, but maybe they are trying to find insects in the ground, whereas the Leaf-tossers are probably looking under leaves for their lunch. They don’t appear to be a “lazy” bird family.

This is a family that I could see being named by what they were doing or how their tail looked. After the birds were created, the Lord brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. What ever he decided to call them, that was their name. Maybe this is how Adam named them by observing their behaviors. Others from another family may have had a different way he named them.

Out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. (Genesis 2:19-20 NKJV)

Some interesting articles about this family:

Birds of Brazil – Woodpeckers, Woodcreepers and Foliage-gleaners by Mark George


Wordless Birds


Bird of the World – Firewood-gatherer

Firewood-gatherer (Anumbius annumbi) ©WikiC

Firewood-gatherer (Anumbius annumbi) ©WikiC

The Firewood-gatherer (Anumbius annumbi) is a species of bird in the Furnariidae family. It is the only member of the genus Anumbius.

It is found in Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical seasonally wet or flooded lowland grassland, pastureland, and heavily degraded former forest.

It got its name because it is frequently seen carrying sticks to its nest. It interweaves thorny twigs to build its nest. It can be up to 6½ ft (2 m) tall and decorated with glass or threads. The young from the first brood may be ejected from the territory, but may help raise the second brood.

For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, quarreling ceases. (Proverbs 26:20 ESV)

Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth. As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife. The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly. (Proverbs 26:20-22 KJV)

This next verse I don’t think applies to the Firewood-gatherer bird. I am sure they don’t know one day from the other, so I am sure they do not get in trouble.

Now while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath day. (Numbers 15:32 NKJV)

Firewood-gatherer (Anumbius annumbi) Nest ©WikiC

Firewood-gatherer (Anumbius annumbi) Nest ©WikiC

I discovered this uniquely named bird while working on Furnariidae family. After working on the Toucans, this family of 307 species is rather bland. They are mostly brownish, with little color so I was not as excited trying to find the photos. Yet, the Lord created them all, and who am I to judge them by just their outer feathers? Isn’t that true of us? We aren’t to place one person above another.

My brothers, ye should not have the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ of glory, in favoritism. For if a man with a gold ring in bright clothing comes into your synagogue, and also a poor man in dirty clothing comes in, and ye have regard for the man wearing the bright clothing, and say to him, Sit thou here well, and ye say to the poor man, Stand thou there, or sit here below my footstool, then are ye not partial among yourselves, and become judges from evil thoughts? Listen, my beloved brothers, did not God choose the poor of the world, rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom, which he promised to those who love him? (James 2:1-5 ACV)

Even the birds can help us learn lessons that are good for us. Praise the Lord for all He does to help us serve Him better. Look around, there are lessons everywhere to be discerned and taken to heart.

(Wikipedia and other internet sources)

Anumbius annumbi (Firewood Gatherer) by Jose Ignacio, Maldonado