Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)


Buffy-fronted Seedeater (Sporophila frontalis)


French: Sporophile à front blanc German: Riesenspelzer Spanish: Semillero frentiblanco

Callirhynchus frontalis

J. P. Verreaux

, 1869,

Cayenne; error = Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


Molecular study found this species to be sister to S. fringilloides#R, but in most recent review it was left in sequence with S. nigricollis, S. caerulescens and S. luctuosa#R where it had been placed in an earlier study#R. Monotypic.


SE Brazil (from also S Bahia, Espírito Santo and SE Minas Gerais S to N Rio Grande do Sul), E Paraguay (Alto Paraná) and NE Argentina (Misiones).

Descriptive notes

12·5 cm; 19·8–21 g. Large seedeater, the largest of genus, with short, deep and strongly rounded bill. Male has head greyish, contrasting creamy and flaring eyebrow behind... read more


Song explosive and far-carrying, unmusical and grating, “jeje jet” or “cheh-cheh-chew!”; one less... read more


Lower growth of humid forest, as well as forest edge and shrubby and overgrown clearings adjacent... read more

Food and feeding

Feeds on various grass seeds, especially of bamboo; when seeding bamboo not available, may take larger insects (as suggested by this... read more


Breeding thus far recorded only during bamboo masting events, specifically those involving Guadua species. No other information.


Nomadic in search of seeding bamboo, but remains in general area of distribution throughout year.

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Uncommon to rare, and everywhere irregular. Global population estimated to be in range 2500–9999 individuals, and likely to be declining. Very patchily... read more

Recommended citation

Jaramillo, A. (2020). Buffy-fronted Seedeater (Sporophila frontalis). 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 21 February 2020).