Scarlet-rumped Tanager (Cherrie's) Ramphocelus passerinii costaricensis

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Thraupidae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Pascal O. Title and Kevin J. Burns

Cherrie’s Tanagers (Ramphocelus costaricensis) are gregarious birds found on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Panama. Though it was classified for many years as a subspecies of Passerini's Tanager (Ramphocelus passerinii), Cherrie’s Tanager was returned to species status in 1997 (American Ornithologists' Union 1997), based on genetic evidence, lack of hybridization with its sister species, and differences in female plumage. Male plumage is a striking combination of mostly black plumage contrasting with a scarlet-red patch extending from the lower back to the rump. Females have less conspicuous plumage, but have a bright orange rump and band across the breast. This species is most commonly found in forest edge habitat and second growth. These tanagers have a varied diet of fruits and arthropods and form social breeding pairs, though there is high occurrence of extra-pair offspring. Most of our information on Cherrie's Tanager comes from long-term observational studies of this species by Skutch (1954) at one site in Costa Rica.


© L. Irby Davis

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Title, P. O. and K. J. Burns (2010). Scarlet-rumped Tanager (Cherrie's) (Ramphocelus passerinii costaricensis), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.