Siskin (Carduelis spinus)

A tree-seed feeder, the Siskin is particularly associated with conifers, but also feeds in birch and alder trees in winter. It visits gardens to eat peanuts and sunflower seeds, but is not usually a ground-feeder. In winter, it associates in flocks, which share a bounding, tight-packed sociability with the Redpoll. Males sometimes separate out from the flocks in spring to sing from treetops. When feeding, these tiny finches are acrobatic, almost tit-like in their actions.

VOICE Flight calls loud, whistled, clear, with slightly squeaky or metallic quality, tsy-zee or tsu-ee; feeding birds give low, hoarse buzz or purr; song mixes calls and fast trills with hard twittering notes, from tree or in flight.

NESTING Tiny nest of twigs and stems, lined with plant down and hair, high in tree; 4 or 5 eggs; 1 or 2 broods; May-July.

FEEDING Eats seeds of pine, larch, and various other trees.

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