Spangle-cheeked Tanagers were previously considered to be conspecific with the Green-naped Tanager (Tangara fucosa) on account of their similar vocalizations and foraging behavior, as well as plumage. However, the two species are genetically distinct and geographically isolated. The Spangle-cheeked Tanager is found in the highlands of Costa Rica and western Panama, and its overall altitudinal range spans 1100 to 3200 m. Unlike many Tangara species, it typically travels in single-species flocks, and only occasionally joins flocks with other species, most commonly those containing Common Bush-Tanagers (Chlorospingus ophthalmicus). This species’ heavily spangled upperparts should make it automatically distinctive within its range. Outside of its range, other aspects of the coloration separate this species from the Green-naped Tanager. Little is known about its diet and life history. Other names include the Dow Tanager (Davis 1972), Calliste paillete [French], Glanzfleckentangare [German], and Tangara Caripinta [Spanish] (Isler and Isler 1987).