Golden-billed Saltator (Saltator aurantiirostris)
Male Golden-billed Saltator, Barra do Quaraí, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, August 2004 - click for larger image Barra do Quaraí, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
August 2004

The Golden-billed Saltator is distributed in the Peruvian Andes and in north and central Argentina, western Paraguay, Uruguay and the extreme south of Brazil. It is found in dry montane scrub and woodland as well as chaco and espinilho woodland.

Male and female Golden-billed Saltator, Barra do Quaraí, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, August 2004 - click for larger image The bill varies in colour with the male having a mainly or entirely orange bill, the female having a black bill with some orange spots and the immatures having a mainly black bill. Since these photos were taken in the austral spring I presume that the individuals with entirely black bills are females. There is a conspicuous white stripe behind the eye and the white or buffy throat is surrounded by a black band.
Female(?)Golden-billed Saltator, Barra do Quaraí, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, August 2004 - click for larger image There are 6 sub-species with apparently quite wide plumage variation. This is the S. a. parkesi sub-species.

They are usually heard before they are seen and usually found in pairs.

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