Atlantic Canary Serinus canaria (Linnaeus, 1758)

Order: Passeriformes Family: Fringillidae

Status: Breeding in Madeira

Atlantic Canary
Canary
Serinus canaria

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Atlantic Canary Field ID Keys

Shape & Size


A small songbird with a roundish body, a relatively long, forked tail and a fairly heavy bill.

Colour Pattern


A bird easily identified by its bright yellow breast and brownish back with greyish stripes. The female is distinct from the male by being less colourful.

Behavior


Sociable and familiar finch that likes to perch on trees and sing all year round. It is normally seen in joint flocks of European Goldfinch and Common Linnet

Habitat


The Canary is native to the Macaronesia area (Madeira, Azores and the Canary Islands).
This bird is widely distributed throughout the Madeira archipelago, being found on the islands of Madeira, Desertas and Porto Santo, from seashore to upper altitudes. Being so it does not have a well-defined habitat, but farm lands, gardens and areas with creeping or sparse vegetation are the most common.

Distinction from similar species


Canary is very similar to European Serin being the latter smaller in size, shorter-tailed, with shorter bill and less yellow on the underparts. Songs of each species will be a good diagnostic feature.

Serinus canaria Biometrics


Total length: 12.5 - 13.5 cm (Svensson et al, 2009)

Other Bird Facts


Seasonality in Madeira: All year
Breeding: Canaries lay 3 to 5 eggs up to 6 broods between January and July.
Diet: Feeds on seeds.

Status


Madeira local status by Romano et al, 2010: Very Common breeding bird
Madeira local status by Zino et al, 1995: Very Common breeding bird
Conservation status by the IUCN Red List Categories, 2013: Least Concern ver 3.1

Curiosities
Canaries were once used in coal mining as a warning system. Due to their tendency to sing much of the time, they provided a good audible evidence for toxic gases releases, as it would die before affecting the miners.

Name of this species in other languages


Portuguese: Canário
German: Kanarengirlitz
Dutch: Kanarie
Swedish: Kanariefågel
Danish: Kanariefugl
Finish: kanarianhemppo
Norwegian: Kanariirisk
Spanish: Canario, Serín Canario
French: Serin des Canaries
Italian: Canarino delle Isole Canarie
Polish: Kanarek
Slovak: Kanárik divý
Czech: Kanár divoký
English synonyms: Island Canary

Edited by Catarina Fagundes Catarina Fagundes

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