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White-lined Tanager - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by HelenB
Sarapiquis Neotropical Center, Costa Rica, 23 February 2007
Tachyphonus rufus


Male showing the white linings under the wings
Photo © by Pantanal1
Chapada dos Guimarães, Mato Grosso, Brazil, 2007
Click on photo for larger image

14 cm (5.5 in); 16g
Adult male is glossy black with a small, often concealed, white patch on the scapulars (photo - right). The white wing linings are only visible in flight, as shown in the photo, below right.
Adult female is rufous, paler below. Both have the typical tanager bill which is gray, but lower bill of the male is whiter, reminding of Silver-beaked Tanager.
Juvenile: like adult female, but duller with mottled appearance below.


On the Pacific slope of south-western Costa Rica and westernmost Panama, the males show a little brownish crown patch (usually concealed) and more white on wing coverts than other Central American birds.


From Costa Rica through Central America and in South America from Colombia and Trinidad, through Venezuela and the Guianas to eastern and southern Brazil, eastern Bolivia, Paraguay and north-east Argentina; also in patches of Ecuador and Peru. Seems to avoid the western parts of the Amazon area.


This is a monotypic species1.


Open woods, scrubby, dense young second growth and also around rural houses, coming to feeding stations.


Photo © by Stanley Jones
Chiriqui Province, Panama 3 May 2012

Forages low, gleaning insects and eating seeds and fruit. Also hawks flying insects or pounces on ground insects from a low perch.

Forms pairs throughout the year, nesting from April to July.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Ber van Perlo. 2009. A field guide to the Birds of Brazil. Oxford University Press, New York, NY, USA. ISBN 978-0-19-530155-7
  3. Ridgely and Tudor 2009. Field guide to the songbirds of South America - the passerines. University of Texas Press, Austin, TX, USA. ISBN 978-0-292-71979-8
  4. Ridgely & Gwynne 1989. Birds of Panama. Princeton Paperbacks. ISBN 0691025126
  5. Restall et al. 2006. Birds of Northern South America. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300124156
  6. Birdforum thread discussing identification of western Costa Rican birds

Recommended Citation

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