Eurasian bullfinch, common bullfinch (en.)
Camachuelo común (es.)
Order — Passeriformes.
Family — Fringillidae.
Genus — Pyrrhula.
Species — Pyrrhula pyrrhula.
The bullfinch is distributed throughout Britain, but is scarce in the extreme north and west. It is found throughout central and northern Europe from the Atlantic coast of Western Europe and Morocco to the Pacific coasts of Russia and Japan. In the south of Europe it tends to be a winter visitor
Found in plantations, woodland, gardens and farmland where the bullfinch is associated with scrub and untrimmed hedgerows
Length: 15-19 cm.
Weight: 32-34 g.
Bill is stout and black.
Wings, nape, crown and chin are black.
Wings are black with white bar.
Rump is white.
Tail is slightly forked.
Legs are brown.
Upperparts are blue-grey.
Underparts are bright red.
Back is blue-grey.
Beast, belly and cheeks are rose-pink.
Females and juveniles:.
Females are duller.
Underparts are pinkish-brown.
Bullfinch juveniles are similar in appearance to females but do not acquire the black cap until after their first moult.
The flight is undulating and the calls include a subdued piping warble.
The Bullfinch is a quiet, secretive but heavily built finch that usually spends its time among the branches and dense undergrowth of woodlands.
Bullfinches feed primarily on buds and seeds. The buds from fruit trees, especially woodland trees, are eaten exclusively in the spring. A bullfinch feeds on the buds by landing on the tip of a branch and slowly moving towards the trunk, stripping the bud as it goes. However, it is only when supplies of seeds remaining from the previous summer and autumn diminish that bullfinches attack buds. In deciduous woods, bullfinches demonstrate a preference for the seeds of dock, nettles, privet, bramble, birch and ash. These seeds are the main food supply until buds begin to develop.
The Eurasian Bullfinch can inflict serious damage on orchards by feeding on the buds of fruit trees. This has been a serious problem, especially in south-east England, where orchards capable of yielding several tons of fruit have been stripped by bullfinches so efficiently that only a few pounds could be harvested.
Their population has declined substantially over much of Western Europe since about 1955, likely because of habitat loss through urbanization, deforestation, and the intensification of agricultural practices, including the loss of hedgerows.
Stress: the most common cause of feather loss in finches is stress.
Eye Problems / Conjunctivitis: Herpes virus infection; Mycoplasmal Conjunctivitis or Blepharitis.
Parasites. Iodine deficiency. Scaly Face Mites. Scaly Legs.
Bullfinches construct nests containing fine twigs with moss and lichen intertwined and a lining of black roots and shrubs. Nests are usually placed only a few feet above ground. There are sometimes up to three clutches of 4-5 eggs laid during the season, which spans early May to mid-July. Chicks hatch out in about two weeks and are fed a mixture of seeds and insects. The male Bullfinch helps the female incubate the eggs, andhe also feeds her while she sits on the nest. He later assists the female in collecting food for the young.