Serinus serinus (Linnaeus, 1766) NS SERIN 16400
Family: Passeriformes > Fringillidae

Serin, Philip Croft

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.

Select a topic for more facts and statistics about the Serin

  • Breeding
  • Winter


Serin identification is sometimes difficult. The following article may help when identifying Serin.

related video

Identifying Green finches in your garden

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.

Flight call


Develop your bird ID skills with our training courses

Our interactive online courses are a great way to develop your bird identification skills, whether you're new to the hobby or a competent birder looking to hone your abilities.

Browse training courses

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.



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

European Distribution Map

European Breeding Bird Atlas 2


Change in occupied 10-km squares in the UK


Serin is a scarce passage migrant and winter visitor.

Weekly occurence of Serin from BirdTrack
Weekly occurrence patterns (shaded cells) and reporting rates (vertical bars) based on BirdTrack data. Reporting rates give the likelihood of encountering the species each week.


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.


View a summary of recoveries in the Online Ringing Report.


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


Feather measurements and photos on featherbase


For information in another language (where available) click on a linked name

Welsh: Llinos Frech
Catalan: gafarró europeu
Czech: zvonohlík zahradní
Danish: Gulirisk
Dutch: Europese Kanarie
Estonian: koldvint
Finnish: keltahemppo
French: Serin cini
German: Girlitz
Hungarian: csicsörke
Icelandic: Gulfinka
Irish: Seirín
Italian: Verzellino
Latvian: girlicis
Lithuanian: europinis svilikelis
Norwegian: Gulirisk
Polish: kulczyk (zwyczajny)
Portuguese: milheirinha
Slovak: kanárik polný
Slovenian: grilcek
Spanish: Serín verdecillo
Swedish: gulhämpling

Links to more information from

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