Turquoise Dacnis occurs in the Northern Andes Zoogeographic Region, where it is endemic to Colombia. As recently as the middle of the 20th century, it was known from less than 10 specimens, only one of which was associated with a specific locality (Hellmayr 1936, Meyer de Schauensee 1951). Currently it is known from six sites on the Pacific slope (Dagua Valley) and adjacent eastern slope of the Western Cordillera (Bosque Yotoco), all in Valle del Cauca (Meyer de Schauensee 1951, Carriker 1955, Collar et al. 1992); on the western slope of the Central Cordillera near Calarcá (Collar et al. 1992); and from a cluster of clustered sites on the western slope of the Eastern Cordillera in Antioquia, Boyacá, and Cundinamarca (Hilty and Brown 1986, Collar et al. 1992, Stiles et al. 1999, BirdLife International 2000, Botero and Verhelst 2001, Cortés Herrera et al. 2014). It is most readily found in Laguna de Pedro Palo, a lagoon near Chicaque Natural Park (Calderón-Franco 2011). The population here is considered abundant relative to other areas such as Serrania de las Quinchas, a protected reserve within Magdalena Valley (Stiles 1999, Quevedo et al. 2006).
Turquoise Dacnis is reported from a surprisingly broad elevational range (Chaparro-Herrera et al. 2013), although the center of elevational abundance is in the middle montane zone (Parker et al. 1996), with populations concentrated at elevations between 1300-2200 m (Munves 1975, Stiles and Bohórquez 2000, Botero and Verhelst 2001, Kattan et al. 2006). It also has been observed as low as 300-1799 m near the foothills along the Río Dagua, Valle del Cuaca, and along the Pacific slope (Meyer de Schauensee 1952), at about 1500 m in Quindío, and from 1700-2200 m in Cundinamarca (Isler and Isler 1987), and even as high as 2845 m (Botero and Verhelst 2001).