Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)

Least Concern

Black-chested Mountain-tanager (Cnemathraupis eximia)


French: Tangara à poitrine noire German: Schwarzbrust-Bergtangare Spanish: Tangara dorsiverde

Tanagra eximia


, 1840,

Santa Fe de Bogotá, Colombia


N two races show strong genetic divergence from S two#R, although morphological differences are subtle. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. e. eximia (Boissonneau, 1840) – Black-chested Mountain-tanager – Andes of SW Venezuela (S Táchira) and adjacent Colombia (Norte de Santander and Cundinamarca).
  • C. e. zimmeri (R. T. Moore, 1934) – Colombia at N end of W Andes (Páramos of Frontino and Paramillo) and in C Andes (Caldas–Antioquia border S to Tolima).
  • C. e. chloronota (P. L. Sclater, 1855) – Moss-rumped Mountain-tanager – S Colombia on both slopes of Andes (from Huila and Cauca) S to NW Ecuador.
  • C. e. cyanocalyptra (R. T. Moore, 1934) – Andes of S Ecuador S to N Peru (S to E Piura and N Cajamarca, mostly N of R Marañón).
  • Descriptive notes

    18–22 cm; 50–70 g. Dark-plumaged, quiet tanager with short, thick bill, usually a few stiff bristles on chin. Nominate race has crown and nape silky cornflower-... read more


    Dawn song a simple series of alternating notes, the first lower, e.g. “tchew syéeuw,... read more


    Wet mossy montane forest, along forest borders and in elfin woodland near tree-line. Recorded at... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mostly fruit; also insects. In Colombia recorded as taking fruit from Ericaceae, Miconia (Melastomataceae), and Hedyosmum... read more


    No information.


    Presumed resident; little information.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Generally uncommon to rare. Uncommon in Venezuela. Rare to uncommon and somewhat local in Ecuador and Colombia, where most numerous at higher... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hilty, S. (2019). Black-chested Mountain-tanager (Cnemathraupis eximia). 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 13 December 2019).