Black-headed Saltator Saltator atriceps

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Thraupidae
  • Polytypic: 6 subspecies
  • Authors: Anant Deshwal, Pooja Panwar, and Ragupathy Kannan



There is little detailed information on the behavior of Black-headed Saltator. It occupies all strata, from the undergrowth to the canopy (Parker et al. 1996), but perhaps is more frequent in the midstory and canopy) (Jones 2004). Black-headed Saltator can be very conspicuous, but at times also can be very retiring, remaining mostly concealed within dense vegetation (Howell and Webb 1995). Even so, it often is very noisy, and gives away its presence with frequent, loud vocalizations. It often is in small groups, of 3-10 (Howell and Webb 1995). Occasionally has a flight-song (Sutton 1951).


Black-headed Saltator probably is territorial, but there is no information on territoriality in this species, or on territory or home range size.

Sexual Behavior

There is very little information on sexual behavior of Black-headed Saltator, but it often duets (Stiles and Skutch 1989), and so presumably is socially monogamous; reference to singing groups of more than two birds (Jones 2004) suggest that perhaps its social behavior is more complex. It also has a display while singing, in which the singing bird bows deeply while turning from side to side (Stiles and Skutch 1989), but the relationship of this display to courtship or to pair maintenance has not been investigated.

Social and interspecific behavior

Black-headed Saltator usually is in small groups, of 3-10 individuals( Stiles and Skutch 1989, Howell and Webb 1995), and occasionally associates with other species as well (Stiles and Skutch 1989).

Recommended Citation

Deshwal, A., P. Panwar, and R. Kannan (2019). Black-headed Saltator (Saltator atriceps), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.