Conservation status

In general, puffbird populations must be declining throughout South and Central America simply because the area of standing forest is shrinking, although any species with a real predilection for edge habitats might be faring rather better. The swallow-winged puffbird has probably increased in numbers with the opening up of Amazonian forests by man. No species is currently considered threatened, and only the sooty-capped puffbird (Nystactes noanamae) is classified as Near Threatened. This species is confined to the Choco Endemic Bird Area in western Colombia, where it is generally uncommon. Recent

A pair of white-whiskered puffbirds (Malacoptila panamensis) perch near each other in Ecuador. (Photo by Steven Holt/VIREO. Reproduced by permission.)

records come from very few sites, although much of its potential range awaits thorough exploration.

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