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Masked Tityra - BirdForum Opus

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Photo © by Reini
Costa Rica, February 2005
Tityra semifasciata


20–24 cm (7¾-9½ in)
Male has a black mask in the head, almost white underside, and mostly pale folded wings.
Female has a dark hood covering the entire head, relatively darker underside and also darker upperwing coverts.


Female, subspecies fortis
Photo © by Stanley Jones
Madre de Dios Department, Peru, August, 2018

Central and South America
Central America: found in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama
South America: Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina

Accidental vagrant to the United States with 1 record at Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park.


In the past, Tityras have been placed in both the Cotingidae and the tyrant flycatcher Tyrannidae family, but now given its own family, Tityridae.


There are 9 subspecies[1]:

  • T. s. columbiana:
  • T. s. costaricensis:
  • T. s. deses:
  • South East Mexico (Yucatán Peninsula)
  • T. s. fortis:
  • South East Colombia to south-eastern Peru, northern Bolivia and western Amazonian Brazil
  • T. s. griseiceps:
  • Pacific coast of Mexico (Sinaloa and western Durango to Oaxaca)
  • T. s. hannumi:
  • Arid tropical north-western Mexico (south-eastern Sonora and north-eastern Sinaloa)
  • T. s. nigriceps:
  • Tropical south-western Colombia (Nariño) and north-westernEcuador
  • T. s. personata:
  • Arid tropical eastern Mexico (Tamaulipas) to northern Nicaragua
  • T. s. semifasciata:
  • Amazonian Brazil south of the Amazon


Subtropical or tropical moist lowland and montane forests, and former forest partially cleared for agriculture, in the canopy and along forest edges. Observed at 151 m.



Their diet consists mostly of fruit, with some insects and occasionally small lizards being taken too. They forage alone, in pairs and also in loose flocks.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Avibase
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved January 2019)
  4. Birdforum thread discussing sexing of this species
  5. BF Member observations

Recommended Citation

External Links

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