Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Atlantic Grey Elaenia (Myiopagis caniceps)


French: Élénie à tête grise German: Grauolivtyrann Spanish: Fiofío gris del Atlántico

Tyrannula caniceps


, 1835,

Santo Amaro, Reconcavo da Bahia, Brazil


Suggestion that this species may not belong in present genus (on grounds of sexual plumage dimorphism) refuted by genetic data#R. Hitherto treated as conspecific with M. cinerea and M. parambae (which see). Apparently close to M. olallai (which see). Proposed form Serpophaga araguayae, based on single specimen from SW Tocantins (Bananal I), in Brazil, shown to be referable to present species#R. Monotypic.


NE, S & SE Brazil (E Maranhão to Pernambuco, S to S Mato Grosso and N Rio Grande do Sul), Paraguay, SE Bolivia and extreme NW & NE Argentina.

Descriptive notes

12–14 cm; 9·5–12·3 g. Sexually dimorphic elaenia. Male has narrow white crown patch (concealed), indistinct whitish loral spot; forehead to hindneck... read more


A very fast, high series of notes, trailing off into descending trill; also high-pitched single or... read more


Tropical lowland evergreen forest and borders of humid forest, including gallery woodland, ... read more

Food and feeding

Insects, also small fruits. Normally forages high above ground in treetops and outer canopy foliage, often with mixed-species flocks in... read more


Season Sept–Jan in S Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul) and Argentina. Nest (Argentina) a neat cup 7·5 cm in diameter, 4 cm high,... read more


Resident in N; some withdraw from extreme S parts of range during austral winter.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally rare to uncommon, but often difficult to see, easily overlooked unless voice known and is locally common in some areas.... read more

Recommended citation

Fitzpatrick, J. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Atlantic Grey Elaenia (Myiopagis caniceps). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 12 December 2019).