Tyranni - Old and New World Suboscines

This page shows a portrait gallery of individual species of Suboscines (Tyranni), a suborder of Passeriformes, see Taxonomy note below. I photographed these birds in a tropical forest, mountain, and wetland habitats.

The first gallery features both Old World Suboscines (Eurylaimides) and New World Suboscines (Tyrannides). The second gallery features feeding and foraging behaviour of three pitta species and a male Bearded Bellbird with mouth wide open calling to mark its territory.

Old and New World Suboscines

Suboscine Notes

Displayed species in the gallery are ‘Red List 2019’ assessed as ‘Least Concern’. Images of the three species of pitta are Old World tropical region birds that belong to the Pittidae family; these are one of my favourite birds to photograph.

I photographed the New World species in Trinidad, mostly at Asa Wright Nature Centre in Trinidad’s Northern Range and some in Ecuador. These suboscines species mainly inhabit the forest, but some species including the white-headed marsh tyrant inhabit savanna and inland wetlands. Galapagos wildlife is known for not fearing of humans and was one of the friendliest birds I encountered was the Galapagos Flycatcher. I photographed this species on several islands.

Suboscines Behaviour

Behaviour Notes

I photographed the blue-winged pitta in Singapore’s Central Catchment Area. I first spotted the bird in the undergrowth but was unable to get any closeup images, eventually the bird flew off. I returned to the area ten days later in the hope of finding the individual again. I gave looking and went to a nearby shelter for break and lunch. While I was eating, I noticed the bird was foraging in a shallow ditch at the back of the shelter. I spent the next two hours overserving and photographing the bird turning over leaf litter, eating grubs and pulling up worms.

My first sighting and images of the rainbow pitta were in the forest at Fogg Dam Conservation Reserve in Australia’s Northern Territory. However, my best photographs were of four different individuals at Howard Springs. I observed them foraging and one collecting nest material.

On Floreana Island, one Galapagos Flycatcher was not just content with posing; it decided to investigate my camera perching on the lens. It was too close to focus, so I used my camera phone.

Tyranni Taxonomy

I adopt the Tyranni taxonomy in J Boyd’s Taxonomy in Flux Checklist to help the presentation of my Passeriformes photo album collections. This taxonomy involves grouping families under new infraorders and parvorders.

The figure shows a simplified taxonomy family tree relevant to Tyranni (Suboscines)​ photo albums. As shown in Tyranni (Suboscines)​ , photo albums comprise:
(a) Infraorder Eurylaimides (Old Word Suboscines) with parvorder Eurylaimides containing Pittas (Pittidae).
(b) Tyrannies (New World Suboscines) infraorder with two parvorders:
(i) Tyrannida contains Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae), Cotingas (Cotingidae) and Manakins (Pipridae) families.
(ii) Furnariida Ovenbirds (Furnariidae) and Antbirds (Thamnophilidae).

Note that Sibley and Ahlquist Taxonomy all families are lumped under suborder Tyranni.