Family New World Warblers (Parulidae)

Least Concern

Fan-tailed Warbler (Basileuterus lachrymosus)


French: Paruline des rochers German: Fächerwaldsänger Spanish: Reinita roquera
Other common names: Neotropical Fan-tailed Warbler

Basileuterus lachrymosa


, 1850,

Laguna Huetulacán, Veracruz, Mexico


Previously placed in genus Euthlypis; in bill shape and long, graduated tail resembles Icteria (Icteridae), but this is due to convergence. Paler birds in N of range described as race tephra and darker ones in S as schistacea, but differences are clinal and naming of races appears unwarranted. Monotypic.


N Mexico (Sonora and Tamaulipas) S to NW Nicaragua.

Descriptive notes

15 cm; 10–21 g. Has front of head blackish, with conspicuous yellow crown patch, white loral spot and narrow white eye-crescents; rear of ear-coverts, nape and... read more


Song a series of clear, downslurred whistles, rising sharply on penultimate note, can be... read more


Submontane and lower montane evergreen or semi-deciduous forest with undisturbed understorey,... read more

Food and feeding

Feeds on insects and other invertebrates. Forages mainly by gleaning and picking prey from leaves and rocks, on ground and low in... read more


Nest an open cup of dried leaves, grasses and pine needles, hidden on ground, often under leaf litter. No other information.


Mainly sedentary. N populations (those in Sonora and Chihuahua) may move S in winter. Vagrant to SE... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Fairly common, but often local. Appears to be rather thinly distributed throughout most of range. No population estimates available.

Recommended citation

Curson, J. (2019). Fan-tailed Warbler (Basileuterus lachrymosus). 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 7 December 2019).