Family Tanagers (Thraupidae)

Least Concern

White-throated Shrike-tanager (Lanio leucothorax)


French: Tangara à gorge blanche German: Weißkehl-Würgertangare Spanish: Tangara gorjiblanca

Lanio leucothorax


, 1865,

Tucurrique, Costa Rica


See L. aurantius. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • L. l. leucothorax Salvin, 1865 – Caribbean slope from Honduras (Olancho) S to E Costa Rica (S to Limón, also locally on W slope in Guanacaste).
  • L. l. reversus Bangs & Griscom, 1932 – Las Agujas (NW Puntarenas), in W Costa Rica.
  • L. l. ictus Kennard & J. L. Peters, 1927 – lowlands and foothills around Almirante Bay (NW Panama).
  • L. l. melanopygius Salvin & Godman, 1883 – Pacific slope from W Costa Rica (Puntarenas S of entrance to Gulf of Nicoya) S to W Panama (Chiriquí, both slopes in Veraguas, and foothills on Caribbean slope of W Coclé).
  • Descriptive notes

    20 cm; 30–45 g. Slender tanager with fairly long tail and strong bill sharply hooked at tip, upper mandible with well-developed “tooth” on cutting edge. Male nominate race... read more


    Variety of sharp, sometimes scratchy chips and chatters. Commonest vocalization when with foraging... read more


    Interior of humid and wet lowland and foothill forest; throughout range occurs mainly in hill... read more

    Food and feeding

    Arthropods; fruit occasionally eaten. Of four stomachs examined, two contained only animal matter and two contained both animal and... read more


    Recorded in May. One nest in Costa Rica was in low bush by stream inside forest; contained 2 eggs, white with bold chocolate-brown and... read more


    Apparently resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Uncommon to locally fairly common throughout much of range. Occurs in a number of protected areas, among them Indo-Maíz Biological Reserve (Nicaragua... read more

    Recommended citation

    Hilty, S. (2020). White-throated Shrike-tanager (Lanio leucothorax). 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 27 February 2020).