Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

Elegant Euphonia (Euphonia elegantissima)


French: Organiste à capuchon German: Blaukappenorganist Spanish: Eufonia elegante
Other common names: Blue-hooded Euphonia, Blue-rumped Euphonia

Pipra elegantissima


, 1838,



Forms a monophyletic species group with E. cyanocephala and E. musica (plus E. sclateri and E. flavifrons), and all formerly considered conspecific; widely separated geographically, the three do not differ greatly in voice or behaviour, although males differ somewhat in plumage, females less so. Race vincens poorly differentiated, and perhaps better subsumed into nominate. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • E. e. rileyi (van Rossem, 1942) – NW Mexico (SE Sonora and NE Sinaloa).
  • E. e. elegantissima (Bonaparte, 1838) – W & C Mexico (from S Sinaloa, Guanajuato and S Nuevo León) S, mainly in mountains, to Belize, C & S Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and CN Nicaragua.
  • E. e. vincens E. J. O. Hartert, 1913 – mountains of Costa Rica and W Panama (E to Veraguas).
  • Descriptive notes

    10 cm; 13–17 g. Small-billed euphonia, male with orange-rufous underparts. Male nominate race has rufous forehead bordered behind by pencil-thin line of black; crown... read more


    Song a long, fast jumble of little trills, bubbly notes, whistles and chips in rambling fashion.... read more


    In Mexico occurs in open pine–oak (PinusQuercus) woodland, oak scrub... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds almost entirely on small soft berries, principally of mistletoe; exocarp sometimes removed before eating. Pairs or small groups,... read more


    Insufficient data on season. Rounded or globular nest with side entrance, finely woven with slender rootlets and dry grass stems, lined... read more


    Birds from N part of range in Mexico may migrate S during coldest months; also descends to lower... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common over most of range. Survives in variety of semi-open or disturbed montane habitats, and also occurs in a number of protected areas,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hilty, S. (2020). Elegant Euphonia (Euphonia elegantissima). 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 29 February 2020).