Hepatic Tanager (Red Tanager)

Parents and their young sing sweetly to each other
Hepatic Tanager (Red Tanager) Scientific Classification
Scientific name
Piranga Flava
Hepatic Tanager (Red Tanager) Physical Characteristics
Grey, Yellow, Red, Olive
5 years
0.8 to 1.7 ounces
Hepatic Tanager (Red Tanager) Distribition

They sing pleasant whistling tunes to every various other.

If you ever before discover on your own treking via yearn woodlands in the Southwestern hills, pay attention for the enjoyable whistling tunes of the hepatic tanager. While their brilliant red and yellow shades do not use much camouflage, they such as to feed in the trees’ inside, making them tough to area. Scientists do not understand much concerning this species, making detecting one in the wild even more interesting. Discover every little thing there is to learn about the unstudied hepatic tanager!

5 Incredible Hepatic Tanager Realities

  • Hepatic tanagers in the USA like to stay in hill yearn woodlands.
  • Moms and dads and their young sing swiftly to every various other throughout springtime and summer season.
  • North species are bigger and stockier than their southerly equivalents.
  • They regularly feed in family teams or sets.
  • Their population has actually boosted by 24% over the last 3 generations.

Where to Discover the Hepatic Tanager

The hepatic tanager stays in over 20 nations, consisting of the USA, Brazil, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Mexico. It has a comprehensive variety in South America, mostly the eastern part of the continent, where it lives year- round. These birds additionally live in locations of Central America and Mexico all year. The north hepatic tanager species stay in the Southwestern USA throughout the reproducing period prior to moving to Mexico for the cooler months. In the USA, these tanagers reproduce in yearn timberlands at high altitudes. Throughout movement, they will certainly live in similar yearn- oak environments yet at reduced altitudes. They stay in numerous settings southern of the United States boundary, consisting of desert sanctuaries, hill woodlands, dry bogs, and granges. Try to find these tanagers in the Arizona and New Mexico hills throughout springtime and summer season, and pay attention for their pleasant tunes, frequently shared in between sets and their young.

Hepatic Tanager Nest

You will certainly discover their nest roughly 30 feet in the air in a tree fork near completion of a branch, probably on a want or oak tree. The nest itself is a broad, level mug made from yard, branches, and various other plant issue. The females line the within with soft products like moss, animal hair, blossoms, and turfs.

Scientific Name

The hepatic tanager’s scientific name is Piranga Flava. Its typical name hepatic implies “liver- tinted,” describing its red- brownish coloring. Its scientific name, Flava, implies “yellow” or “gold” in Latin. Hepatic tanager has 3 subspecies: Hepatica, Lutea, and Flava.

Dimension, Appearance, and Habits

Hepatic tanagers are stocky, tool- sized birds with brief tails, stout expenses, long tails, and long wings. These strong birds are in between 3.5 and 7.9 inches long, consider 0.8 to 1.7 ounces, and have a wingspan of 12.6 inches. The north team has a tendency to be bigger than their southerly equivalents, yet both are bigger than a sparrow and smaller sized than a robin. Men are a block- red shade with grey bordering and ear tufts. The females are olive and yellow with grayish ear tufts, and the juveniles are grey and olive with light touches.

Males develop areas in the springtime and protect them with their analytical whistles. A lot of mating companions remain with each other after reproducing, frequently developing family teams. They might additionally sign up with various other little teams. Their ordinary life expectancy is 5 years.

Male hepatic tanager against a black background
Hepatic tanagers step in between 3.5 and 7.9 inches long and consider in between 0.8 and 1.7 ounces.clayton harrison/Shutterstock. com

Movement Pattern and Timing

Hepatic tanagers are brief- range travelers in the north components of its variety in the USA. It lives year- round in its settings in Central and South America. Those that remain in the Southwestern USA throughout the reproducing period will certainly relocate additionally southern to Mexico throughout the winter season.


Hepatic tanagers are mostly insectivores that feed in teams.

What Does the Hepatic Tanager Eat?

These birds eat primarily insects and spiders, consisting of caterpillars, moths, bees, ants, grasshoppers, butterflies, and beetles. The hepatic tanager additionally consumes berries, seeds, blossoms, and nectar. It forages in trees and shrubs, jumping along branches systematically till it discovers concealed insects. It might also quickly seek its victim mid- trip if it attempts to run away. This species additionally feeds with each other in teams or sets.

Predators, Dangers, and Conservation Status

The IUCN notes the hepatic tanager as “least concern.” Their population remains to boost over a comprehensive variety and does not get approved for “intimidated” standing. However that does not imply this species might not deal with future risks. As warming up rises, these birds are at risk to environment and source losses from dry spells and wildfires. Springtime warm front can additionally harm the young in their nests.

What Consumes the Hepatic Tanager?

Grownup tanagers are a food resource for predators like owls and falcons. Their eggs and nestlings frequently come down with smaller sized birds like blue jays, grackles, and crows. Various other animals like squirrels, chipmunks, and snakes might additionally swipe children from their nests. Very little is found out about just how they protect their young. Tanagers are primarily understood for their vocal singing battles and are not fairly hostile. Nonetheless, scientists have actually experienced males and females abuse, posturing, and going after trespassers.

Reproduction, Youthful, and Molting

Females mostly construct the nests, periodically gone along with by the males that aid in bring structure products. Little is found out about their courtship screens, other than that the males bring the females food throughout dating and incubation. Females lay 3 to 5 blue- eco-friendly eggs with brownish areas, and both sexes supply incubation and feedings to nestlings. Very little else has actually been uncovered concerning their reproduction procedure, consisting of incubation size and when the chicks fledge the nest. Hepatic tanagers are sexually fully grown at one year old.


The variety of fully grown people in their population is unidentified, yet scientists categorize them as an usual species. From 1970 to 2014, their population boosted by 124%, and within the last 3 generations, they have actually boosted by 24%. Nonetheless, these studies covered much less than 50% of the international population. Much of their southerly areas in Central and South America are unstudied.


  1. IUCN Red List, Available here: https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/103811627/138437427
  2. Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Available here: https://txtbba.tamu.edu/species-accounts/hepatic-tanager/

Relate animals

Abyssinian Guinea Pig

They are one of the oldest breeds of guinea pig

Ackie Monitor

The ackie monitor has a spiny tail which it uses as in self-defense.


The Albertonectes had the longest neck out of other Elasmosaurids.

American Bully

Though the American bully was bred to look intimidating, it makes an extremely friendly family pet!

Latest Animal News