Proposal (#13) to South American Classification Committee
Continue to recognize Strix chacoensis as distinct from S. rufipes
Finally, I propose that we follow Straneck & Vidoz (1995), Hardy et al. (1999), and K√∂nig et al. (1999) in treating Ciccaba chacoensis as a distinct species from C. rufipes. Plumage and vocalizations strongly support the split (see above refs; listen to Hardy et al.). Given that chacoensis may be more closely allied with C. hylophila, chacoensis should be placed between those two taxa in our linear arrangement.
Mark B. Robbins, December 2001
From Alvaro Jaramillo:
"Yes. Having seen and heard chacoensis in Salta, Argentina as well as rufipes in Chile I have no doubt that they are separate species. There are similarities in plumage, in particular pale female rufipes may look like chacoensis but that is about the entirety of the similarity between these two taxa. Most male rufipes, and certainly all southern rufipes are much darker and coarsely marked than any chacoensis. The differences in voice are very striking, as are the differences in habitat between the two species. The chaco thorn forests where chacoensis is found are quite dissimilar from the southern beech (Nothofagus) forests that one finds rufipes in. In the northern part of the range rufipes is found in much shorter, arid woodlands but in these cases it is found in the moistest, tallest, protected valleys."