Dec 29 2012
Here’s a beautiful little bird that’s a favorite of mine though I’ve never actually seen him.
Similar in size to a Carolina wren, the silver-throated tanager (Tangara icterocephala) is a true tanager in the Thraupidae family. Our “tanagers” (scarlet, western, summer, etc.) are now considered cardinals (Cardinalidae).
Silver-throated tanagers don’t migrate so you have to go to the mountain forests of Central or South America to see them. When not breeding they hang out in mixed flocks with other small birds of similar color. Black and yellow is their flock badge.
Since 85% of their diet consists of fruit, I hear it’s easy to attract them to feeders. Wouldn’t it be stunning to see this colorful little bird in your backyard!
Charlie Hickey photographed this one at Dota, San Jose, Costa Rica, last month.
(photo by Charlie Hickey. Click on the image to see the original.)