Crossbill, Red

Crossbill, RedLatin name: Loxia curvirostra

Length, wingspan: 6.25″, 11″

What they eat: Seeds of conifers, fruits

Habitat: Forests, woodlands

Plants that attract: Conifers with cones and fleshy fruits such as crabapples

Where they nest: Coniferous trees


My observations: Crossbills are a type of finch with an unusual crossing beak that allows them to pull seeds out of the cones of conifers. They will also eat sunflower seeds. The Crossbill in this photo decided to sit in one of our crabapple trees while enjoying a sunny winter’s day; it was amazingly good-natured about letting me take photos. Since they’re called Red Crossbills, you might think I’ve posted the wrong photo for this profile, but this really is the right bird: the females are gold in color while the males have red plumage. I haven’t seen a red one to photograph just yet, though!


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