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Speckled Tanager Ixothraupis guttata

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Thraupidae
  • Polytypic: 6 subspecies
  • Authors: Nicholas A. Mason and Kevin J. Burns

Sounds and Vocal Behavior


Vocalizations are generally weak, undistinguished, metallic chirps, often emitted while foraging and when taking flight (Slud 1964, ffrench 1991). Described as "tsit" or "tic" notes by van Perlo (2009) and as staccato, thin chirps and chatters by Stiles and Skutch (1991). Can also produce a series of short, clear bell-like notes, accelerating to a trill (Skutch 1954). Voice is undistinguished, lacking the resonance of the calls of Golden-hooded Tanager Tangara larvata, making only twittering weak chips and "tsit" alone or in short series (Slud 1964). Chirps of the Speckled Tanager recall notes of the Masked Tanager Tangara nigrocincta (Hilty and Brown 1986), and are thinner and sharper than notes of the Golden-hooded Tanager (Stiles and Skutch 1991). All of the currently available recordings of T. guttata through xeno-canto and the Macaulay Library are restricted to a series of call notes that are sharp, brief and seemingly produced intermittently. However, the closely related Dotted Tanager T. varia has a song that is reported to be similar to that of Speckled Tanager (Isler and Isler 1999). As heard in this recording by C. Marantz, the song of T. varia begins with a few quickly accelerating brief notes that give way to a series of 4 or 5 more musical notes like  "tic---tic---tic-tic-dee--dee--dee--dee."

Nonvocal Sounds

None reported.

Recommended Citation

Mason, N. A. and K. J. Burns (2010). Speckled Tanager (Ixothraupis guttata), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.