Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)

Least Concern

Red-necked Tanager (Tangara cyanocephala)


French: Calliste à tête bleue German: Blaukappentangare Spanish: Tangara militar

Tanagra cyanocephala

Statius Müller

, 1776,

Cayenne; error = Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


See T. fastuosa. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • T. c. cearensis Cory, 1916 – Ceará, in NE Brazil.
  • T. c. corallina (Berlepsch, 1903) – Pernambuco and Alagoas, in E Brazil.
  • T. c. cyanocephala (Statius Müller, 1776) – SE Brazil (from S Bahia and Espírito Santo S to Rio Grande do Sul), SE Paraguay (Canindeyú) and adjacent NE Argentina (Misiones).
  • Descriptive notes

    13 cm; 16–21·6 g. Unmistakable, brilliantly patterned tanager with green underparts and red nuchal area. Male nominate race has forehead and lores down to chin... read more


    Call a high, sharp “seet!” and softer “sip”, either note sometimes in a series accelerating into a... read more


    Forest-based species found in canopy, forest borders, light woodland and second growth, and... read more

    Food and feeding

    Fruit supplemented by some insects; reported food items include Phytolacca, melastome berries, Urtica, and myrtle. Occurs... read more


    All information from observations of captives. Deep, grassy cup-nest; clutch 3 eggs, whitish with brownish spots, mostly at larger end;... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Status not well known; common in some places. Range highly fragmented, with four isolated populations, and total numbers now substantially reduced... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hilty, S. (2020). Red-necked Tanager (Tangara cyanocephala). 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 January 2020).