Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

Black-eared Seedeater (Crithagra mennelli)


French: Serin oreillard German: Schwarzwangengirlitz Spanish: Serín orejinegro
Other common names: Black-eared Canary

Poliospiza mennelli

E. C. Chubb

, 1908,

Shangani River, Zimbabwe




E Angola E to SE Tanzania (few records further N), S Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

Descriptive notes

13–14 cm; 13–17 g. Medium-sized, conical-billed, pale grey finch with white supercilium and dark face. Male has upper forehead to hindcrown streaked blackish-... read more


Song, usually from treetop or other prominent perch or during courtship flight, a series of uneven... read more


Lowland and lower montane dry Brachystegia and Baikiaea woodland, including ... read more

Food and feeding

Mostly small seeds, buds, flowers, nectar, some fruit; some small insects. Seeds include those of a variety of grasses e.g. Panicum... read more


Season possibly Sept–Apr, mostly Dec–Mar or May. Monogamous. Presumed to be solitary and territorial. Displaying male sings... read more


Resident and partially nomadic; in non-breeding season large flocks wander at random throughout... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Common to locally common or uncommon; uncommon in E Angola. Estimated population in S Mozambique in excess of 10,000 individuals. In Brachystegia... read more

Recommended citation

Clement, P. (2020). Black-eared Seedeater (Crithagra mennelli). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 18 February 2020).