Family New World Sparrows (Passerellidae)

Least Concern

Dusky Bush-tanager (Chlorospingus semifuscus)


French: Chlorospin ombré German: Graubrust-Grünammer Spanish: Clorospingo oscuro
Other common names: Dusky Tanager-finch, Dusky Chlorospingus

Chlorospingus semifuscus

P. L. Sclater and Salvin

, 1873,

near Quito, Ecuador


Race livingstoni mensurally very similar but very close to species rank owing to its white vs reddish iris (3 [a character missed by other recent literature#R]); blacker crown with no brownish tinge (1); slightly paler grey belly (1); and song (a repeated single high-pitched note) with rather different note shape (but only two recordings of livingstoni; score at least 1)#R; further research into voice needed. Two subspecies recognized.

What do (1) and (2) mean? Learn more about the scoring system.
Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. s. livingstoni J. Bond & Meyer de Schauensee, 1940 – Northern Dusky Bush-tanager – W slope of W Andes of Colombia from S Chocó (upper R San Juan) S to Cauca (Munchique area).
  • C. s. semifuscus P. L. Sclater & Salvin, 1873 – Southern Dusky Bush-tanager – SW Colombia (Pacific slope in Nariño) and W slope in Ecuador (S to W Cotopaxi).
  • Descriptive notes

    14–15 cm; 17–23 g. Drab, undistinguished bush-tanager. Nominate race has crown and side of head dark grey, tiny white postocular spot sometimes present; upperparts, including... read more


    Dawn song a series of high “tsit” notes changing to “tsit-it” notes and gradually into slightly... read more


    Wet montane forest, especially wet, foggy and epiphyte-laden forest; stays mainly inside forest,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects, and small fruits and berries. Forages in pairs and in small groups, often with mixed-species flocks as well as independently of... read more


    Nest-building in Apr, nest with chicks in Jun, and stub-tailed fledglings seen with adults in Apr (four separate pairs) and Jun (two pairs... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Restricted-range species: present in Chocó EBA. Fairly common to common throughout rather narrow elevational zone. Generally more numerous at higher... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hilty, S. (2020). Dusky Bush-tanager (Chlorospingus semifuscus). 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).