Common Redpoll/Carduelis flammea - Adult

Common Redpoll/Carduelis flammea - Photographer: Chris Rymer
Common Redpoll/Carduelis flammea - Photographer: Иван Петров
Common Redpoll/Carduelis flammea - Photographer: Борис Белчев
Common Redpoll/Carduelis flammea - Photographer: Ники Петков

The Common Redpoll (Carduelis flammea) is a species in the finch family. It breeds somewhat further south than the Arctic Redpoll, also in habitats with thickets or shrubs. Nominate C. f. flammea (Mealy Redpoll) breeds across the northern parts of North America and Eurasia. There is also an Icelandic subspecies, Icelandic Redpoll (C. f. islandica), and one that breeds in Greenland and Baffin Island called the Greenland Redpoll (C. f. rostrata). Together the Iceland and Greenland forms are sometimes known as "Northwestern Redpolls". All forms migrate south into Canada, northern USA, or Eurasia. These birds are remarkably resistant to cold temperatures and winter movements are mainly driven by the availability of food. The common redpoll is smaller, browner and more streaked than the Arctic Redpoll. There are two distinct populations (one lighter, one darker) united in islandica, the relationships of which are unresolved.

Similar species

The Mealy Redpoll is larger and paler than the Lesser Redpoll with which it often mixes, apparently without significant interbreeding though sympatry was established too recently to draw firm conclusions.The male Mealy Redpolls are darker than the similarly sized Arctic Redpolls but the females are almost identical.


It has been obtained by Antonio Arnaiz-Villena et al.

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