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a family of birds of the order Passeriformes. The body is 12.5-38 cm long. The coloring is olive brown, and the abdomen often has vertical stripes. The legs are short and strong; the tail, which is stiff as in woodpeckers and tree creepers, helps support the bird as it crawls over tree trunks in search of such food as insects and spiders. Sometimes the bird feeds on the ground by killing passing ants. There are 48 species in the family living in the tropical forests of Central and South America. They build nests in sheltered places, such as the hollows of tree trunks and the thick crowns of palm trees. Each clutch contains two or, more rarely, three white eggs.