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24

Eurasian Siskin

(Spinus spinus)
Alternate name(s): "European Siskin", "Common Siskin", "Siskin"
German name(s): "Zeisig"

Size: 11-12.5 cm; wing span 20-23 cm
Weight: 10-18 g

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Eurasian Siskin at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

ADULT

MALE

Near-lateral view of a male Eurasian Siskin on the ground (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

Lateral view of a male Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Near Oslo airport, Oslo, Norway, June 2018]

Lateral view of a male Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of J. Pires )
[Mora, Evora, Portugal, November 2015]

Near-dorsal view of a male Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Near Oslo airport, Oslo, Norway, June 2018]

Near-dorsal view of a male Eurasian Siskin on the ground (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

FEMALE

Frontal view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of J. Pires )
[Mora, Evora, Portugal, February 2016]

Near-frontal view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

Close-up lateral view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Near Oslo airport, Oslo, Norway, June 2018]

Lateral view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

View onto the upperparts of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

Dorsal view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

Ventral view of a female Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of J. Pires )
[Mora, Evora, Portugal, February 2016]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Lateral view of a juvenile Eurasian Siskin (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Near Oslo airport, Oslo, Norway, June 2018]

Behaviour

In some years, for as yet unexplained reasons, droves of Eurasian Siskins migrate southwards in large flocks. Such events are on a much more massive scale than the normal annual migration.

Food, Diet

Like all other species of finches (and related genera), Eurasian Siskins are seed-eaters.

Note that cardueline finches (i.e. European Goldfinch, European Greenfinch, Eurasian Siskin and their close relatives) feed their young primarily regurgitated seeds, while fringilline finches (all others) feed their young primarily invertebrates.

Male Eurasian Siskin taking seeds from a thistle; note the greyish cap typical of autumn plumage (photo courtesy of A. Sarok)
[Near Temerin, Serbia, November 2016]

Near-frontal view of a female Eurasian Siskin feasting on the seeds of an introduced Thuya shrub
(photo courtesy of D. Wilczynska)
[Ostrow Mazowiecka, Masovia, Poland, January 2016]

Two male Eurasian Siskins approaching a water puddle (photo courtesy of J. Pires )
[Tejo estuary, Portugal, March 2018]

Call(s)/Song

For this species we have recorded the following call(s)/song. The interpretation of their meaning is our own; comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome.

siskin_dw_20190413_1.m4a (Ctl Poland) Group chatter (flock) © DW
siskin_dw_20190413_2.m4a (Ctl Poland) Group chatter (flock) © DW
siskin_dw_20190503.m4a coelebs
(Poland)
Territorial calls (male) + Common Chaffinch © DW

We have also recorded the wing beat of an Eurasian Siskin.

siskin_dw_20190413_3.m4a (Ctl Poland) Group chatter (flock) © DW

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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