Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)


Cone-billed Tanager (Conothraupis mesoleuca)


French: Tangara de Berlioz German: Witwentangare Spanish: Tangara picuda

Rhynchothraupis mesoleuca


, 1939,

Juruena, c. 490 km NW of Cuiabá, Mato Grosso, Brazil


Has sometimes been placed in monotypic Rhynchothraupis, or suggested to be conspecific with C. speculigera, but new vocal information and knowledge of female plumage indicate a possible link with Sporophila fringilloides (Sporophilinae), although another report mentions vocal similarity to Ramphocelus carbo, in present subfamily. Further research required. Monotypic.


W Mato Grosso (upper R Juruena Basin) and SW Goiás (Emas National Park), in SC Brazil.

Descriptive notes

c. 12–14 cm; one male 15 g, one female 15·5 g. Male is mainly black with greenish gloss; centre of breast and belly white; small white patch at base of primaries... read more


Three-part song of male consists of several musical notes, followed by 2 slightly lower-pitched... read more


In Mato Grosso inhabits flooded areas along rivers, e.g. seasonally flooded forest and flooded... read more

Food and feeding

Insects; also seeds. In upper R Juruena region (Mato Grosso), seen to catch small aerial insects during rapid sallies, returning to same... read more


No information. Apparently territorial.


No information. Population in Goiás appears largely confined within the boundaries of Das Emas... read more

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Uncommon to rare, and very local. For 65 years known only from a single male specimen, taken in 1938 in WC Brazil, apparently from or near Juruena telegraph post... read more

Recommended citation

Hilty, S. & Sharpe, C.J. (2019). Cone-billed Tanager (Conothraupis mesoleuca). 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 6 December 2019).