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Version 1.0

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Hooded Grosbeak Coccothraustes abeillei

Alayna Carter
Version: 1.0 — Published August 1, 2014


Geographic Variation

Four subspecies usually recognized (Howell et al. 1968, Dickinson 2003):

pallidus, described as Herperiphona abeillii pallida Nelson 1928; type locality Jesús María, Chihuahaua, Mexico

Northwestern Mexico in Chihuahua, Sinaloa, and Durango (Miller et al. 1957, Howell and Webb 1995).

Female much paler and grayer than female abeillei or cobanensis (Nelson 1928, Howell and Webb 1995); "upperparts of body dull grayish brown with only a trace of the conspicuous greenish suffusion … underparts nearly uniform pale grayish brown with only a slight trace of the strong buffy brown shade in the others and lacking the greenish yellow mixture on breast; wing longer than in other forms" (Nelson 1928).

saturatus, described as Herperiphona abeillii saturata Sutton and Burleigh 1939; type locality Rio Sabinas, near the village of Gomez Farias, southwestern Tamaulipas, Mexico.

Occurs in northeastern Mexico, in southwestern Tamaulipas and eastern San Luis Potosí (Miller et al. 1957, Howell et al. 1968).

"Dullest and most olive-gray of the races of Herperiphona abeillii. Males much less yellow both above and below than in H. a. abeillii (Lesson); duller and more olive-gray than in H. a. cobanensis Nelson; and darker, olive-backed rather than brown-backed, and considerably shorter-tailed than in H. a. pallida Nelson. Females duller throughout than in straight [nominate] abeillii; duller and grayer than in cobanensis; and darker, greener-backed, and shorter-tailed than in pallida" (Sutton and Burleigh 1939).

abeillei, described as Guiraca abeillei Lesson 1839; type locality Mexico

Occurs in central Mexico, from Michoacán and Guerrero east to Veracruz and northern Oaxaca (Miller et al. 1957, Binford 1989).

See Detailed Description.

cobanensis, described as Herperiphona abeillii cobanensis Nelson 1928; type locality Cobán, Verapaz, Guatemala

Occurs in southeastern Mexico (Chiapas) and Guatemala (Nelson 1928, Miller et al. 1957).

"Entire body of male clearer, brighter yellow than in [nominate] abeillii, specially on the breast; the female much more strongly suffused with buffy brown on underparts; in both sexes bill broader and heavier" (Nelson 1928).


Related Species

Coccothraustes abeillei and Coccothraustes vespertinus (Evening Grosbeak) formerly were classified in the genus Hesperiphona, which consisted only of these two New World species. Most authors currently classify abeillei and versperintus in Coccothraustes, a genus that also includes an Old World grosbeak (Cococthraustes coccothraustes, Hawfinch). Phylogenetic analysis of DNA sequence data, from both mitochondrial and nuclear genes, confirms that the New World fringilline grosbeaks (as represented by verspertinus) form a clade with Old World fringilline grosbeaks (Mycerobas, Coccothraustes, and Eophona) (Lerner et al. 2011, Zuccon et al. 2012).

Recommended Citation

Carter, A. (2014). Hooded Grosbeak (Coccothraustes abeillei), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.hoogro1.01