Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Golden-faced Tyrannulet (Zimmerius chrysops)


French: Tyranneau à face d’or German: Goldgesicht-Kleintyrann Spanish: Mosquerito caridorado

Tyrannulus chrysops

P. L. Sclater

, 1859,

Zamora, Zamora-Chinchipe, Ecuador


Previously considered conspecific with Z. albigularis (which see). Formerly included race flavidifrons, here transferred to Z. viridiflavus#R. Further vocal and genetic sampling needed to resolve status of races cumanensis (almost certainly a species based on distinctive vocalizations), the very small minimus (voice unrecorded) and three vocally distinct populations of nominate (Venezuelan Andes and Perijá Mountains; Central and Eastern Andes of Colombia and Ecuador and extreme N Peru; proposed race molestus from Western Andes of Colombia)#R. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • Z. c. minimus (Chapman, 1912) – Santa MartaTyrannulet – N Colombia (Santa Marta Mts, N Magdalena).
  • Z. c. cumanensis (J. T. Zimmer, 1941) – Sucre Tyrannulet – NE Venezuela (NE Anzoátegui, Sucre, N Monagas).
  • Z. c. chrysops (P. L. Sclater, 1859) – Golden-faced Tyrannulet – Sierra de Perijá and Andes of NW Venezuela, Colombia (except Nariño), E Ecuador and N Peru (S to San Martín).
  • Descriptive notes

    10·5–11·5 cm; 7·7–10·6 g. Brightly coloured tyrannulet with distinctively golden-yellow face and dark eyes. Nominate race has bright... read more


    Highly vocal, repeatedly uttering ringing whistled “pleeeeur” or “hueeer”;... read more


    Humid montane forest, forest borders, second-growth woodland, semi-deciduous forest and coffee... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects; regularly eats mistletoe (Loranthaceae) and other small epiphytic berries. Forages singly or in pairs, often following mixed-... read more


    Prolonged breeding season, with nests observed Apr, Jun, Sept and Nov in Colombia and breeding-condition specimens collected Mar–Dec... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Fairly common to common. Occurs in several protected areas, including e.g. El Dorado Bird Reserve, Tambito Natural Reserve and Tatam... read more

    Recommended citation

    Fitzpatrick, J., Christie, D.A., de Juana, E. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Golden-faced Tyrannulet (Zimmerius chrysops). 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 18 January 2020).