One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A tiny tropical woodpecker with a short unstiffened tail, found chiefly in Central and South America.
Picumnus and other genera, family Picidae: numerous species, including the olivaceous piculet (P. olivaceus)
- ‘Small in size, the piculet ranges from 3 to 5 inches in length.’
- ‘The Fine-barred Piculet (Picumnus subtilis) is a species of bird in the Picidae family. It is endemic to Peru.’
- ‘The avian family Picidae includes the woodpeckers, piculets and wrynecks.’
- ‘But curiously enough, there is no hard evidence of this piculet from Guyana, according to the last checklist published that I know of.’
- ‘Moreover, the number of transitions as a function of transversions appears linear over the range of nucleotide divergences represented by woodpeckers and the piculet.’
Mid 19th century: apparently a double diminutive of Latin picus ‘woodpecker’.
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