Order: Passeriformes Family: Regulidae Status: Breeding in Madeira
Very small, roundish bird.
An endemic species of Madeira easily identified by its orange crown stripe. It has a dark face with a white supercilium stripe that does not extend beyond the eye and a white contour line below the eye. It has grey-yellow upperparts with a white patch on the wings and whitish underparts.
This is a bird that never stands still, always jumping or flying from one branch to another in the trees canopy or bush foliage.
The Madeira Firecrest is found all around the island of Madeira although but not on any other island of the archipelago.
It is normally observed at mid-altitude areas with Heather Erica arborea and Erica scoparia or gardens with conifers and lower bushes. The low and mid-altitude Laurel Forest is also a good hotspot for it and, in the winter, sometimes the Madeira Firecrest is seen on bushes by the coast.
What mainly distinguishes the Madeira species Regulus madeirensis from its European congenerous Regulus ignicapillus is the shorter white supercilium, longer bill and darker wings.
Wingspan: 13 - 16 cm (Hume, 2002)
Total length: 9 - 10 cm (Svensson et al, 2009)
Weight: 5 - 7 g (Hume, 2002)
Seasonality in Madeira: All year
Breeding: Builds hanging circular nests in bushes, using spider webs interwoven with small branches or moss.
Diet: Takes tiny insects, spiders and moth eggs from foliage.
The firecrest is the smallest bird of Madeira and Europe. Its differences to the Common Firecrest R. ignicapilla are quite obvious so, in 2003 it was split from a subspecies endemic to Madeira Regulus ignicapillus madeirensis to a full species Regulus madeirensis.
Due to the old records of Firecrest being referred to the nominal species and after it being split into 2 full species there are no confirmed records of the European Firecrest Regulus ignicapillus to Madeira.
Madeira local status by Romano et al, 2010: 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
Spanish: Reyezuelo de Madeira
French: Roitelet de Madère
Italian: Fiorrancino di Madera
Polish: Mysikrólik Maderski
Slovak: Králik Madeirský
English synonyms: Madeira Kinglet
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