Cinclodes is an ecologically diverse genus of South American passerine birds and represents a case of continental adaptive radiation along multiple axes. We investigated morphological diversification in Cinclodes using a comprehensive set of morphometric measurements of study skins. Principal component analysis identified 2 primary axes of morphological variation: one describing body size and a second capturing differences in wing-tip shape and toe length. Phylogenetic analyses of the first principal component suggest an early divergence of Cinclodes into 2 main clades characterized by large and small body sizes. We suggest that 2 morphological outliers within these main clades (C. antarcticus and C. palliatus) may be cases of island gigantism and that a third (C. patagonicus) may reflect ecological character displacement. Despite its ecological and physiological diversity, the genus Cinclodes does not appear to show morphological diversity beyond what is typical of other avian genera.
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Vol. 132 • No. 1