Common Chaffinch: Medium finch. Buff body. Crown and nape are blue-gray; belly and vent are white. Dark wings with white shoulder patches and single white bars. Forages in trees, bushes. Eats seeds and insects. Bounding flight, alternates rapid wing beats with wings pulled to sides.
Range and Habitat
Common Chaffinch: Eurasian species; widely scattered as far as north Africa, western Asia, southern Russia, and western Siberia. Accidental during migration in the Maritimes and in Massachusetts and Maine; found almost anywhere with scattered shrubs and trees, orchards, farmlands, parks, gardens, and suburbs.
The chaffinch is a popular pet bird in many countries. In Belgium, the ancient traditional sport of vinkenzetting pits male chaffinches against one another in a contest for the most bird calls in an hour.
The coelebs part of its name means "bachelor". This species was named by Linnaeus; in his home country of Sweden, where the females depart in winter, but the males often remain.
The Common Chaffinch is the most common finch in western Europe. It is also called a Spink, from its fink or vink sounding call.
A group of finches has many collective nouns, including a "charm", "company", and "trembling" of finches.
The Common Chaffinch is a widespread species in Europe, and is the most common finch found there. Its range extends throughout western Asia, northwestern Africa, the Azores and Madeira, and is also found on the Canary islands of Tenerife and Gran Canaria. An occasional Common Chaffinch may be seen in North America, but these may be escaped caged birds. An introduced colony of Common Chaffinches also still exists in South Africa near Cape Town. This species prefers open woodlands, gardens and farms, and primarily eats seeds while feeding its young a diet of insects. The Common Chaffinch has a conservation rating of Least Concern.