Parker et al. (1996) list the Short-tailed Finch as a ‘Medium Research Priority’. The most urgent need is for comprehensive and quantitative population-habitat surveys of known populations in areas of extreme southern Peru, Bolivia and Argentina. Point-transect or line transect methodologies would probably be more advantageous in its high-Andean terrain. The main objective of such surveys should be to examine the relationship between presence and abundance of the species with boulders and other microhabitat features. Such information would enable us to determine whether these populations are stable, or are declining (or even are increasing). Furthermore, they would help us to better predict the possible consequences of future changes in Andean rural lifestyles and land-use patterns themselves brought about by climate change.
Second, the Short-tailed Finch is in need of a comprehensive systematic study to help determine its taxonomic relationships within the family Embezeridae. Collection of specimens, particularly from known localities in Peru, would also go some way in identifying any patterns of geographical variation, or age-related patterns in plumage characteristics throughout its range and greatly add to our knowledge of Andean biogeography.