Serinus serinus (Linnaeus, 1766)
Family: Passeriformes > Fringillidae
This small finch is typically a scarce visitor to the UK. Pairs occasionally breed in southern England and the Channel Islands.
These streaky yellow finches can often be pinpointed by their loud, scratchy song. Their breeding range extends across southern, central and eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. In northern parts of the breeding range, the species is partially migratory.
Serins are associated with coniferous woodland habitats, as well as agricultural areas, parks and gardens. They feed on seeds, buds, flowers and small invertebrates.
Serin identification is sometimes difficult. The following article may help when identifying Serin.
Not all green finches are Greenfinches. There are a number of green and yellow finches that visit garden feeders, some common, some much more rare. Let us help you to discover the identity of an unfamiliar visitor - is it a Serin - or is it one of the more likely culprits?
Listen to example recordings of the main vocalisations of Serin, provided by xeno-canto contributors.
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Status and Trends
Population size and trends and patterns of distribution based on BTO surveys and atlases with data collected by BTO volunteers.
This species can be found on the following statutory and conservation listings and schedules.
|Species of European Conservation Concern||Least Concern|
|IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (global)||Least Concern|
|Schedule 1 license required (to disturb)||Yes|
|Birds Directive Annex 1||No|
|Listed on the Annexes of||WCA(I,IV), Bern(II)|
With a slowly expanding European range the Serin has been long predicted as a potential colonist of the UK. It has, however, remained a rare breeder. No confirmed breeding was recorded during 2008–11
Occupied 10-km squares in UK
|No. occupied in breeding season||5|
|% occupied in breeding season||0.2|
|No. occupied in winter||12|
|% occupied in winter||0.4|
European Distribution Map
Change in occupied 10-km squares in the UK
|% change in range in breeding season (1968–72 to 2008–11)||-16.7%|
|% change in range in winter (1981–84 to 2007–11)||+100%|
Serin is a scarce passage migrant and winter visitor.
Information about movement and migration based on online bird portals (e.g. BirdTrack), Ringing schemes and tracking studies.
An overview of year-round movements for the whole of Europe can be seen on the EuroBirdPortal viewer.
Lifecycle and body size information about Serin, including statistics on nesting, eggs and lifespan based on BTO ringing and nest recording data.
View number ringed each year in the Online Ringing Report
|Typical Lifespan||3 years with breeding typically at 1 year|
|Wing Length||Adults||70.9±2.2 | Range 67–74mm, N=48|
|Juveniles||71.4±2.7 | Range 68-75.5mm, N=34|
|Females||69.8±1.6 | Range 67–72mm, N=28|
|Body Weight||Adults||11.1±1.02 | Range 9.30–13.0g, N=48|
|Juveniles||11.1±1.0211 | Range 9.60–12.7g, N=34|
|Females||11.0±0.96 | Range 9.70–12.8g, N=28|
Feather measurements and photos on featherbase
|Field Codes||2-letter: NS | 5-letter code: SERIN | Euring: 16400|
For information in another language (where available) click on a linked name
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