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Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Superphylum: Deuterostomia
Phylum: Chordata
Cladus: Craniata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Infraphylum: Gnathostomata
Superclassis: Tetrapoda
Cladus: Reptiliomorpha
Cladus: Amniota
Classis: Reptilia
Cladus: Eureptilia
Cladus: Romeriida
Subclassis: Diapsida
Cladus: Sauria
Infraclassis: Archosauromorpha
Cladus: Crurotarsi
Divisio: Archosauria
Subsectio: Ornithodira
Subtaxon: Dinosauromorpha
Cladus: Dinosauria
Ordo: Saurischia
Cladus: Eusaurischia
Cladus: Theropoda
Cladus: Neotheropoda
Infraclassis: Aves
Ordo: Passeriformes
Subordo: Passeri
Infraordo: Passerida
Superfamilia: Passeroidea

Familia: Thraupidae
Genus: Saltator
Species: S. albicollis – S. atriceps – S. atripennis – S. aurantiirostris – S. cinctus – S. coerulescens – S. fuliginosus – S. grandis – S. grossus – S. maxillosus – S. maximus – S. nigriceps – S. olivascens – S. orenocensis – S. similis – S. striatipectus

Species transferred to Saltatricula: S. atricollis
[acc. IOC 10.2; SACC 730.03]

Saltator Vieillot, 1816

Typus: Tanagra maxima Statius Müller, 1776 = Saltator maximus


Pitylus Cuvier, 1817 RegneAnim. I p. 390
Stelgidostomus Ridgway, 1898 Auk p. 226

Primary references

Vieillot, L.J.P. 1816. Analyse d'une nouvelle ornithologie élémentaire. 70 pp. Paris: Deterville. Original description p. 32 BHL Reference page.

Additional references

Klicka, J., K. Burns, & G. M. Spellman. 2007. Defining a monophyletic Cardinalini: A molecular perspective. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 45: 1014–1032. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2007.07.006 Full article (PDF)Reference page.
Chaves, J. A., Hidalgo, J.R. & Klicka, J. 2013. Biogeography and evolutionary history of the Neotropical genus Saltator (Aves: Thraupini). Journal of Biogeography 40: 2180–2190. DOI: 10.1111/jbi.12150AbstractReference page.
Burns, K.J., Shultz, A.J., Title, P.O., Mason N.A., Barker, F.K., Klicka, J., Lanyon, S.M. & Lovette, I.J. 2014. Phylogenetics and diversification of tanagers (Passeriformes: Thraupidae), the largest radiation of Neotropical songbirds. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 75:41–77. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2014.02.006 Full article (PDF) Open accessReference page.
Burns, K.J., Unitt, P. & Mason, N.A. 2016. A genus-level classification of the family Thraupidae (Class Aves: Order Passeriformes). Zootaxa 4088(3): 329–354. DOI: 10.11646/zootaxa.4088.3.2 Paywall.Reference page.

Saltator is a genus of passerine birds in the tanager family Thraupidae that are found in Central and South America. They have thick bills, relatively long tails and strong legs and feet. Before the introduction of molecular genetic methods in the 21st century these species were placed in the cardinal family Cardinalidae.


The genus was introduced by the French ornithologist Louis Pierre Vieillot in 1816 with the buff-throated saltator as the type species.[1][2] The name is from the Latin saltator, saltatoris meaning "dancer".[3]

The saltators were traditionally grouped with the cardinals, either in the subfamily Cardinalinae within an expanded Emberizidae[4] or in a separate family Cardinalidae.[5] Molecular phylogenetic studies have shown that the saltators are embedded within the tanager family Thraupidae. Within the Thraupidae the genus Saltator is now placed with the genus Saltatricula in the subfamily Saltatorinae. The relationship of the subfamily to the other subfamilies within the Thraupidae is uncertain.[6][7]

The genus contains 16 species:[7]

Image Common Name Scientific name Distribution
Orinoco Saltator (cropped).jpg Orinoco saltator Saltator orenocensis Venezuela
Saltator similis.jpg Green-winged saltator Saltator similis Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay
Cinnamon-bellied saltator Saltator grandis Mexico to Panama
Olivaceous saltator Saltator olivascens Colombia, Venezuela, and Trinidad
Grausaltator .jpg Blue-grey saltator Saltator coerulescens Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, and Uruguay
Saltator striatipectus -Manizales, Caldas, Colombia-8 (1).jpg Streaked saltator Saltator striatipectus Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guadeloupe, Panama, Peru, and Venezuela.
Lesser Antillean saltator.jpg Lesser Antillean saltator Saltator albicollis Dominica, Martinique, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Saint Lucia.
Buff-throated Saltator (24834629490).jpg Buff-throated saltator Saltator maximus southeastern Mexico to western Ecuador and northeastern Brazil.
Saltator atripennis Saltador alinegro Black-winged Saltator (14999589855).jpg Black-winged saltator Saltator atripennis Colombia and Ecuador.
Saltator atriceps -near Rancho Naturalista, Cordillera de Talamanca, Costa Rica-8.jpg Black-headed saltator Saltator atriceps central Mexico to eastern Panama.
Black-CowledSaltator.jpg Black-cowled saltator Saltator nigriceps Ecuador and the northern border region of Peru.
Saltator fuliginosus -Piraju, Sao Paulo, Brazil-8 (1).jpg Black-throated grosbeak Saltator fuliginosus Atlantic Forest in far northeastern Argentina (Misiones), eastern and southeastern Brazil, and far eastern Paraguay
Slate-colored Grosbeak.jpg Slate-coloured grosbeak Saltator grossus the Amazon in South America, but it is also found in forests of the Chocó in Ecuador and Colombia, and southern Central America from Panama to Honduras.
Saltator cinctus (cropped).jpg Masked saltator Saltator cinctus southern Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.
Saltator maxilosus - Thick-billed Saltator (male); Urupema, Santa Catarina, Brazil.jpg Thick-billed saltator Saltator maxillosus Atlantic Forest in southeastern Brazil, far northeastern Argentina (only Misiones Province), and perhaps far eastern Paraguay.
Saltator aurantiirostris - Golden-billed Saltator; Capivara, Santa Fe, Argentina.jpg Golden-billed saltator Saltator aurantiirostris Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, and Uruguay

The rufous-bellied mountain saltator was formerly a member of this genus. It is now placed in the subfamily Thraupinae and is the only member of the genus Pseudosaltator. Its common name has been changed to rufous-bellied mountain tanager.[7] The black-throated saltator was also formerly assigned to this genus. It is now placed together with the many-colored Chaco finch in the genus Saltatricula as the two species form a divergent clade that is sister to the other members of Saltator.[7]

Vieillot, Louis Jean Pierre (1816). Analyse d'une Nouvelle Ornithologie Élémentaire (in French). Paris: Deterville/self. p. 32.
Paynter, Raymond A. Jr, ed. (1970). Check-list of Birds of the World. Vol. 13. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 228.
Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 346. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
Paynter, Raymond A. Jr, ed. (1970). Check-List of Birds of the World. Vol. 13. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Museum of Comparative Zoology. p. 228.
Committee on Classification and Nomenclature (1998). Check-list of North American Birds (PDF) (7th ed.). Washington, DC: American Ornithologist's Union. p. 631. ISBN 1-891276-00-X.
Burns, K.J.; Shultz, A.J.; Title, P.O.; Mason, N.A.; Barker, F.K.; Klicka, J.; Lanyon, S.M.; Lovette, I.J. (2014). "Phylogenetics and diversification of tanagers (Passeriformes: Thraupidae), the largest radiation of Neotropical songbirds". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 75: 41–77. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2014.02.006.

Gill, Frank; Donsker, David; Rasmussen, Pamela, eds. (July 2020). "Tanagers and allies". IOC World Bird List Version 10.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 19 November 2020.

Further reading

Chaves, J.A.; Hidalgo, J.R.; Klicka, J. (2013). "Biogeography and evolutionary history of the Neotropical genus Saltator (Aves: Thraupini)". Journal of Biogeography. 40 (11): 2180–2190. doi:10.1111/jbi.12150.
Echeverry-Galvis, María Ángela; Córdoba-Córdoba, Sergio (2006). "Descripción del huevo del saltátor collarejo (saltator cinctus) y comentarios preliminares sobre huevos del género saltator" (PDF). Boletín de la Sociedad Antioqueña de Ornitología (in Spanish). 16 (1): 76–84.
Hellack, Jenna J.; Schnell, Gary D. "Phenetic analysis of the subfamily Cardinalinae using external and skeletal characters" (PDF). Wilson Bulletin. 89: 130–148.

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