Spotlight On Ohio Birds

COMMON REDPOLL (Acanthis flammea)

Family: Fringillidae

Order: Passeriformes

Description: 5″-5 1/2″ (13-14cm) Adult male has heavily streaked gray-brown upperparts, wings with 2 white wing bars and white edges to flight feathers. Head is streaked gray with a red fore-crown and black face. Underparts are whitish overall but heavily streaked on flanks. Breeding male has breast and flanks flushed pinkish red. This character is usually lost in winter although flanks are often flushed buff. Adult female is similar to seasonal male but always lacks red flush on breast.

Voice: Call is a series of chittering notes with some rising, questioning notes.

Habitat: Breeds in open subartic coniferous forest and scrub. Avoids dense forests. Winters in open woodland and scrub, weedy fields and suburban and urban areas.

Nesting: An open cup of fine twigs, rootlets, and grasses, lined with a thick layer of feathers and hair. Clutch is 2-7 eggs that are greenish white to pale blue, spotted with purple at the large end.


FYI’s: The Common Redpoll has a throat pouch where they temporarily store seeds till they reach a safe place to eat them.

One banded bird caught in Holland was 7 years and 7 months old.

The Common Redpoll and it’s close relative the Hoary Redpoll can survive colder temperatures than any other songbird.

Resource material provided by:

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology/

The Audubon Society Encyclopedia of North American Birds



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