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[All pictures of garden wildlife on this page are thumbnails. Click on any thumbnail for a large format to be displayed.]

Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs)


Clickhere for the bird's sound.

The male Chaffinch is a colourful gent.

This finch, as big as a House Sparrow, can be found everywhere as long as the surroundings have trees. On the list of most common birds in the Netherlands the Chaffinch is at the fourth rank with some 1.2 million species making them a common visitor in the garden. They are very social birds and in winter they are often in small mixed groups in which you will also see Greenfinches, Bramblings, Tree Sparrows and Great Tits. The bird is very colourful, but as usual with birds this feature applies to the males exclusively. Females are just brown/grey with greenish brown on top and greyish brown below with more colourful patterns on the wings, similat to the males'.

On the left a very young male Chaffinch. The one in the middle and on the right is almost adult. Its cap will become more grey-blue over time.

Chaffinches are excellent singers. In the middle ages they were caught in big numbers, mainly by bird-limers, and were put in cages and sold in the by then rapidly growing cities. In order to make their singing to sound more intense the eyes of the little birds were taken out...

This bird belongs to the family of Finches (Fringillidae). It is common in our garden and can be seen in Holland all year long. The bird is 6" and weighs 20 grams. It lives in woodlands, parks and gardens. It eats seeds and insects. During breeding season, which lasts from April till July, usually two nests are constructed in trees or shrubs. Three to six eggs hatch after 13 days and it takes the hatchlings another 13 days to be able to leave the nest.

Name of this bird in various other languages
Dutch German French Polish Scientific
Vink Buchfink Pinson des arbres Zieba Fringilla coelebs

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