British wildlife recordings

Carduelis chloris : Greenfinch - Fringillidae

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  • Shelf mark

    W1CDR0001389 BD19

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  • Recording date


  • Recording locations

    OS Grid Reference(303500,86500)

  • Recordist

    Shove, Lawrence

  • Species

    Greenfinch, Carduelis chloris

  • Description

    This is a recording of the song of the male greenfinch. The greenfinch is similar in size to the house sparrow but is the most intensely green of any native bird. It has learnt to utilise gardens and is now a familiar visitor to the bird table, when it often arrives en masse to monopolise the feeders by driving off smaller birds. The greenfinch has a very distinctive flight. Its long wings are beaten in bursts to produce marked undulations, which are complemented by a characteristic flight call. Away from the bird table, it is usually seen in small flocks, or during winter in much larger flocks, often with other finches and buntings. The song is a combination of trills and wheezy notes, and is often delivered from the tops of bushes and small trees. During a good year, the greenfinch is capable of two or even three broods. The parents will often feed the young after they have left the nest and the male may even continue to feed any recent fledglings whilst the female is sitting on a new clutch. It is widespread in Britain, and as numbers have fallen on farmland, the greenfinch has compensated by adapting to urban and sub-urban areas. There are thought to be approximately 530,000 territories in Britain.

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