Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)

Least Concern

Black-breasted Warbling-finch (Microspingus pectoralis)


French: Tangara à collier noir German: Flügelfleck-Finkentangare Spanish: Monterita pectoral

Poospiza pectoralis


, 1922,

Guanacos, Cordillera Prov., Santa Cruz, Bolivia


Hitherto treated as conspecific with M. torquatus, but differs in its blacker face, ear-coverts and continuous post-auricular area (neck sides) (1); broader black breastband (1); seemingly (at least on average) slightly darker chestnut vent (ns); rather smaller bill (effect size –2.55 although n=9 for torquatus; allow 2); song typically with a short single song phrase (3), occasionally doubled or tripled, and a faster pace of delivery (2) and always with a trilled note in its song phrases, vs a very long string of repeated subphrases#R. This finding coincides with report in HBW of cytochrome b sequences of the two species differing by 4.4%. Monotypic.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.

N & C Argentina from E Salta, Jujuy and Formosa S to Mendoza, La Pampa, NE Río Negro and W Buenos Aires; non-breeding also N to SE Bolivia (Tarija) and W Paraguay (Alto Chaco region).

Descriptive notes

10–10·5 cm; 9–13·2 g. Adult has crown grey with blackish lateral stripe, blackish mask bordered above by long white supercilium, small white subocular crescent; nape and... read more


Song has sibilant timbre and faster delivery than that of formerly conspecific M. torquatus... read more


Arid woodland, chaco thorn-forest, Monte Desert (both shrubland and open woodland), often... read more

Food and feeding

During breeding season feeds largely on arthropods (in contrast to sympatric P. ornata, which relies on grass seeds), typically... read more


Start of egg-laying from mid Oct to late Dec in drier years, extended to early Feb in wetter years; some evidence of two broods. Probably... read more


Resident in some areas, partially migratory (moving N... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Fairly common to common throughout its extensive range.

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Black-breasted Warbling-finch (Microspingus pectoralis). 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 19 February 2020).