we evaluated the distribution of abundance of three species of warblers in the southern portion of the brazilian atlantic forest (baf): tropical parula (parula pitiayumi), the golden-crowned warbler (basileuterus culicivorus) and the white-rimmed warbler (basileuterus leucoblepharus). three types of forests comprise this region of the atlantic forest: seasonal semi-deciduous forest (sf), mixed rain forest (mf) and dense rain forest (df). these forest types occur at different elevations: sf ranging from 200 to 800 m, mf ranging from 800 to 1,200 m and df ranging from sea level up to 2,000 m. we used point counts in fifteen study areas distributed in the three forest types. the white-rimmed warbler and the tropical parula had higher abundances in mf, and their abundance was positively correlated with the elevation. the golden-crowned warbler did not present a significant difference in abundance among the forest types, and no correlation between abundance and elevation was found. we suggest that the difference in the occupancy of the forest strata by the golden-crowned warbler is because this species is more generalist and thus less sensitive to variations in the vegetation structure among the forests types when compared to the other two warbler species.