Spotted Tanager Ixothraupis punctata

  • Order: Passeriformes
  • Family: Thraupidae
  • Polytypic: 5 subspecies
  • Authors: Aileen Pansacula and Kevin J. Burns

The Spotted Tanager (Tangara punctata) is a small and active member of the genus Tangara, the largest genus of Neotropical birds. They are overall bright green in color, with large black spots covering much of their plumage.  They are South American endemics, occurring in Venezuela, the Guianas, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and possibly Colombia . Their distribution is unusual, with one subspecies occurring in northern Amazonia and the other four subspecies found far away, in the northern and central Andes. Spotted Tanagers occur from lowlands up to 1700 m, but Andean populations are found between 700 and 1700 m. Like most species of Tangara, they are omnivorous and feed on fruit and arthropods. They primarily search leaves and flower buds for their arthropod prey. The breeding behavior (including information on the nest and eggs) remain undescribed. Little information is known about other aspects of their biology, including demography, molts, and populations sizes. Although the Spotted Tanager is sensitive to disturbance and their populations are declining, the IUCN has classified them as "Least Concern" relative to other avian species.


© Ted Parker

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

Recommended Citation

Pansacula, A. and K. J. Burns (2012). Spotted Tanager (Ixothraupis punctata), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.