Family Tyrant-flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Least Concern

Olivaceous Elaenia (Elaenia mesoleuca)


French: Élénie olivâtre German: Schlichtolivtyrann Spanish: Fiofío oliváceo

[Muscicapa] mesoleuca

W. Deppe

, 1830,

Montevideo, Uruguay


Reported hybridization with E. parvirostris in SE Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul) disputed by some authors. Monotypic.


SE Brazil (S Goiás and S Bahia S to Rio Grande do Sul), E Paraguay, NE Argentina and Uruguay.

Descriptive notes

14–16 cm; 16–20 g. Small elaenia with dark breast, two wingbars. Plumage is dull olive above, whitish eyering, little or no white in crown; wings and tail dusky,... read more


Primary call harsh, unmelodious, of 4 notes with pause between first and second, “whik... read more


Interior of humid tropical and upper tropical forest, including forest borders, gallery forest,... read more

Food and feeding

Diet insects and wide variety of small fruits and berries. Generally inconspicuous; perches upright on exposed branches or hidden in... read more


Nests found in Dec and Jan; season probably Sept–Apr. Nest a simple cup of loosely packed moss mixed with Tillandsia and... read more


Probably withdraws into N part of range in austral winter; present in extreme SE Brazil (Rio Grande... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally fairly common to common. Common at higher elevations in Itatiaia National Park, in Brazil. Occurs also in several other protected areas, e.g... read more

Recommended citation

Hosner, P. (2020). Olivaceous Elaenia (Elaenia 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 25 January 2020).