Bird Families

Saffron Siskin / Spinus siemiradzkii


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Where do the siskins live?

The habitat of all siskin species is very wide. These are Europe, Asia, North America, and South America. That is, these birds are found almost everywhere. They prefer to live in mixed forests with tall trees, where they feel safe and can hide well, as well as in highlands.

Is the siskin a migratory bird or a sedentary one?

Siskins are typical migratory birds. At the end of September, they gather in large flocks and move to the south - closer to the warmth. That is why in winter you can very often meet siskins, for example, in the Crimea. Only in very rare cases, if in their habitats these birds find an ice-free body of water - a river, a lake, a stream - they can stay near it for the winter.

What does a siskin look like

The siskin species includes 19 varieties. They are distinguished, first of all, by the area of ​​distribution, as well as by color and behavior. The most famous types:

Golden siskin

A North American species also known as the American goldfinch. For the winter, these birds migrate to Mexico and change color. Lemon yellow males turn pale green.

Mexican siskin

Inhabitant of the high mountain regions of North and South America (from 900 m). These birds are very careful and it is difficult to spot them in nature.

Pine siskin

Found in the mountains of North America. It is colored paler than other types of siskins, in brown-yellow tones.

Fiery siskin

The brightest representative of the siskin. Its head, wings and tail are jet black, and the rest of the plumage is painted in a bright carmine red color. This species is slightly larger than the common siskin. Distributed in the north of Venezuela, where it is a protected species.

Male and female: the main differences

In siskins, sexual dimorphism is moderate. As usual, males of siskins flaunt their bright and attractive emerald-golden plumage, while females look modest and do not pay attention to themselves. This natural cunning is necessary so that the brownish-brown female is not visible in the nest while incubating the eggs.

Chizhi at home

Siskins are real favorites among connoisseurs of songbirds.

Firstly, they sing a lot and with pleasure almost 10 months a year. It is simply impossible to get bored with such a bird at home!

Secondly, siskins very quickly get used to captivity and become truly tame birds. The owners of the siskin can always safely leave the cage open - the birds always return to their place and will not stain the room. In addition, the siskin can be taught various tricks - to drink water from the owner's mouth, for example.

Thirdly, if you create all the necessary conditions for the siskins, they can also breed chicks in captivity.

And, finally, if in nature birds usually live for 3 years, then at home they live up to 10-12 years.

What do I need?

Siskins do not need a lot of space - the cage can be small, like a parrot. The main thing is that she does not stand in bright sunlight and drafts.

Siskins are also very fond of water procedures, therefore, in addition to the usual drinker, they will need a special container with water for bathing.

It is better to keep birds in pairs or flocks. You can also add neighbors to the siskins. These birds will not only receive guests, but can also learn their singing skills.

In order for the birds to start nesting, they need to create a secluded corner of plywood in the cage, decorate it with spruce and pine branches, and leave material for construction - twigs, feathers, blades of grass.

In nature, siskins make 2 clutches per year. At home, they also lay up to 6 small light eggs with brown spots and stripes. The female incubates them for 12 days. And then it takes about 2 weeks for the chicks to grow up. Parents feed their babies mainly with protein foods - caterpillars and insects.

Eating at home

Siskins are absolutely picky about food. Like all granivorous birds, they will need plenty of clean drinking water. You can feed siskins with any mixtures of seeds and grains (birch, poppy, flax, alder and others). In addition, herbs, fruits and vegetables are added to the diet. For example, cabbage, carrots, apples.

Interesting facts about siskins

  • siskins are real masters of disguise, in nature they arrange their nests in such a way that it is almost impossible to find them, which is why they even say that siskins hide special pebbles in their nests that make them invisible,
  • besides its own song, the siskin can easily and very reliably parody other birds if it lives with them in the neighborhood,
  • siskins not only quickly get used to captivity, but also remember well the person who cares for them, rejoice at his arrival and greet them with singing.


The rolling trills of the siskin are easy to recognize among many others. In his singing there is a characteristic sound "chilik", which gradually fades away, and suddenly continues with ringing chirping, squeak and crackling sounds. It is by the sounds of the song in the forest that you can find a siskin, since birds usually hide in the tops of trees.