Rusty Flowerpiercer is a small tanager of South American mountains. The species is found in forest, edge habitat, and gardens between 1500 and 3000 meters from the coastal mountains of Venezuela south along the Andes to northern Argentina. Males are dark blue gray above and rusty orange below with a narrow black face mask. Females are olive above and whitish below with fine brown streaks. As is typical of flowerpiercers, this species has an upswept bill with a finely hooked tip, with which it punctures the bases of flowers for the purpose of feeding on nectar.