The Lesser Redpoll is a small bird that belongs to the finch family. These birds are found in the northern regions of Europe, Asia and North America, and are known for their distinctive red caps and chestnut coloring. They typically measure around 11-12 cm in length and weigh about 10-15 g.
One of the most identifiable features of the Lesser Redpoll is the red cap on its head which is more prominent on males. The chest and flanks of both sexes are covered in a reddish-brown hue and they have a white belly with black streaks. The Lesser Redpoll has short, pointed bills that are adapted to eating seeds and berries, its primary food sources. They are often found in coniferous forests but can also be seen in mixed forests and wooded areas.
While the Lesser Redpolls are migratory birds, they are more common in northern regions throughout the year, meaning that they do not have to travel long distances during the breeding season. They breed from April to June, with the female laying three to seven eggs in a nest made of grass, bark, and twigs. The nesting site is usually located in a tree and the female is responsible for incubating the eggs while the male brings her food.
In terms of vocalizations, the Redpoll trills a short series of high-pitched notes with a metallic tonality. While not usually considered a songbird, the males can be heard singing a warbling melody during the breeding season.
Lesser Redpolls are known to form large flocks during the winter months, and the individuals within the flock appear to remain loyal to each other. These small birds also provide a vital source of food for larger predatory birds such as owls and kestrels.
Overall, the Lesser Redpoll is a fascinating bird to learn about and observe for bird enthusiasts. Its small size and distinctive markings are sure to capture the attention of anyone who encounters it in the wild.