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threatened and/or endangered

Scarlet Tanager Piranga olivacea


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Scarlet Tanager, male
credit: Steve Maslowski

© Lang Elliot/ (audio)

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Family: Thraupidae, Tanagers view all from this family

Description ADULT MALE BREEDING Has bright red body plumage with black wings and tail. Bill is relatively stout and color varies from pink to gray. ADULT MALE NONBREEDING (sometimes seen in fall) Recalls breeding male, but red elements of plumage become yellowish green. ADULT FEMALE Has yellowish green plumage overall, with darker wings and tail. IMMATURE Recalls adult female, but wings and tail of immature male are much darker than those of immature female.

Dimensions Length: 7 1/2" (19 cm)

Habitat Common summer visitor (mainly May-Aug) to deciduous woodland; winters mainly in South America.

Observation Tips Easy to overlook, so listen for its song.

Range Mid-Atlantic, Eastern Canada, Texas, Southwest, Florida, California, Rocky Mountains, New England, Great Lakes, Plains, Southeast, Western Canada

Voice Song is a series of five or six shrill, whistled phrases; call is a tongue-smacking tchh-brrr.

Discussion Wonderfully colorful, but easy to overlook when perched in dappled foliage, and because it often favors tree canopy for feeding. Combination of bright red body plumage and black wings and tail make male unmistakable. Sexes are dissimilar.