BLACK HEADED SISKIN

Serinus nigriceps Wing 74 – 80 mm

The Black Headed Siskin is common to locally abundant in tile western and southeastern highlands from 1800 – 4100 meters (6000 – 13,500 feet). Almost always in flocks, this little known finch inhabits moorlands with giant lobelia, alchemilla, tussock grass and giant heath, highland grasslands and the open areas of montane forests, especially St. John’s wort and hagenia. Flocks are regularly seen alongside the road to Geferssa Reservoir west of Addis Ababa. The male Black Headed Siskin is the only yellow finch with a black head in the highlands of Ethiopia. The female is similar but her head and neck are dull olive green with some black present oil the top and sides of head, chin and throat. It breeds in the higher levels of the plateau in bushes and low trees in May, June, September, October and November. Its nest is a well made, compact, deep cup like structure fitted with moss, lichens, stems and small roots. Its eggs, two or three in number, are bluish white with a few brown spots.  

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