1092. Fringilla coelebs coelebs

(1092) Fringilla coelebs coelebs.

The Chaffinch.

Fringilla coelebs Linn., Syst. Nat., 10th ed. i, p. 179 (1758) (Sweden).

Vernacular names. None recorded.

Description. - Adult male. Forehead black; crown, nape and neck dark blue-grey, or slaty-blue; mantle chestnut-brown, the bases of the feathers grey and sometimes showing through; lower back and rump dark grass-green; upper tail-coverts and central tail-feathers ashy blue-grey; remaining tail-feathers black, the outermost almost entirely white on the inner web and the one next it with a large diagonal patch of white; lesser and median wing-coverts white; greater coverts black, tipped with white; primaries black, edged with pale yellow and with a white patch at the base of all but the first three: secondaries black, the outer edged with yellow on the terminal two-thirds, the inner broadly edged with white throughout and the innermost with light brown; lores, eyebrows and cheeks deep vinous-red, chin, throat, breast and flanks the same but a little paler; centre of abdomen, vent and under tail-coverts white.

Colours of soft parts. Iris hazel; bill fleshy-brown, or fleshy-grey to slaty-blue; legs and feet fleshy-brown, pale horny-brown to brown.

Measurements. Total length about 160 mm.; wing 78 to 90 mm.; tail 57 to 65 mm.; tarsus 15 to 18 mm.; culmen 11 to 13 mm.

Female. Head, neck, scapulars and back dull chestnut-brown washed with green; rump, upper tail-coverts and tail as in the male; lesser wing-coverts ashy grey-brown, median coverts white; greater coverts dark brown with white tips, quills as in the male but browner; sides of the head and ear-coverts ochraceous-brown, faintly white-shafted ; chin, throat, and upper breast ashy-brown, becoming more a smoky-brown on the lower breast and flanks and whitish on the centre of the abdomen ; vent and under tail-coverts white.

Male in Winter. Upper parts much duller owing to the feathers being edged with greyish.
Nestlings are like the adult female but very dull in all their colours.

Distribution. Practically the whole of Europe, the whole of Northern Asia to East Siberia; Palestine, Asia Minor, Transcaspia, Turkestan, Persia, Tian Schan and once in India.

Nidification. The Chaffinch breeds during April, May and June, building a beautiful little cup-shaped nest of moss and lichen, more or less mixed with grass, roots, etc., very neatly lined with hair and sometimes a little thistle-down. Outside it is always finished off with lichen, spiders' webs and egg-bags and green moss. It may be placed in any hedge, small tree or hawthorn. The eggs number four or five and have a dull pale pink or olive ground-colour, marked with blotches and spots of purple-red or purple-brown. One hundred eggs average 19.3 x 14 .6 mm. (Witherby).

Habits. This bird has once occurred in India, a specimen having been obtained by Capt. C. H. T. Whitehead at Hangu, 25 miles north of Kohat,

The Fauna Of British India, Including Ceylon And Burma-birds(second Edition)
Baker, EC S (1922–1930) The fauna of British India including Ceylon and Burma. Second edition. vol.3 1926.
Title in Book: 
1092. Fringilla coelebs coelebs
Book Author: 
Edward Charles Stuart Baker
Page No: 
Common name: 
Fringilla coelebs coelebs
Vol. 3
Term name: 

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith