The Burnished-buff Tanager is a common resident of gallery forest, pastures, and savannas across South America, from Colombia and Venezuela south to northeastern Argentina. The color of this tanager's opalescent plumage varies with the light, but in general the Burnished-buff Tanager appears straw-gold, with pale greenish blue wings. The two subspecies found in northern and western South America have a black mask and bluish throat. In contrast, on the four subspecies found in eastern and central South America black extends from the sides of the face to the throat, and in a broad stripe down the center of the breast. A seventh subspecies found at the mouth of the Amazon River has plumage that is intermediate between the two other subspecies groups. Burnished-buff Tanagers are usually seen alone or in pairs flying from tree to tree in search of fruits and berries. At times these birds may join other species at fruiting trees. A tanager of open areas, Burnished-buff Tanagers are regular visitors to gardens and trees around buildings in llanos.