Two subspecies recognized:
iradii, described as Cypselus iradii Lembeye 1850; type locality Cuba
Occurs on Cuba.
Similar to nominate phoenicobia, but "tail more deeply forked; back averaging much more sooty (less black), color of sides averaging decidedly paler, and sides of head more extensively grayish brown; averaging larger" (Ridgway 1911).
phoenicobia, described as Tachornis phœnicobia Gosse 1847; type locality Jamaica
Occurs on Jamaica and Hispaniola.
See Detailed Description.