Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

Common Rosefinch (Carpodacus erythrinus)


French: Roselin cramoisi German: Karmingimpel Spanish: Camachuelo carminoso

Loxia erythrina


, 1770,

Volga and Samara Rivers, Russia


Sometimes isolated in Erythrina. Geographical variation weak and, except for race roseatus, not well defined; races not always separable in worn plumage. Previously published phylogeographical analysis of mtDNA sequences, however, suggested existence of three recently diverged groups, corresponding to, respectively, Caucasus, CW Eurasia and NE Eurasia; recent re-evaluation of mtDNA data using coalescence methods, and addition of sequence data from a sex-linked gene, supported distinctiveness of Caucasian group but not the two other groups; overall, coalescence methods indicated lack of gene flow among the three groups and population expansion in CW Eurasian and NE Eurasian groups, the three groups corresponding to described races, further supporting their validity#R. Five subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. e. erythrinus (Pallas, 1770) – Common Rosefinch – N, C & E Europe, W & C Siberia (E to Lena Basin and Sayan Mts), NW Mongolia and, in S, from NW Balkans, Romania and N Ukraine E to N Kazakhstan; winters in N India, lowland Nepal, Bhutan, N Myanmar and NW Thailand.
  • C. e. ferghanensis (Kozlova, 1939) – mountains of E & SE Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and W China (W Xinjiang) S to Afghanistan, W Pakistan and NW Himalayas (E to Kashmir); winters to NW India.
  • C. e. roseatus (Blyth, 1842) – C & E Himalayas from Ladakh E to NE India (probably to Arunachal Pradesh), possibly also N Myanmar, and Tibetan Plateau E to C & S China (Qinghai E to SW Inner Mongolia, Ningxia, Shaanxi, Sichuan, W Guizhou and NW Yunnan); winters in India E to Myanmar, NW & C Thailand, N Laos and NW Vietnam (W Tonkin) and S & SE China.
  • C. e. grebnitskii Stejneger, 1885 – Kamchatka Rosefinch – E Siberia and Russian Far East (Verkhoyanskiy Range and Kolyma Basin E to Chukotka and Kamchatka, S to L Baikal area, Amurland and N Ussuriland), N Mongolia, NE China (Inner Mongolia, Heilongjiang) and N Sakhalin; winters in SE & S China S to N Thailand and N Vietnam.
  • C. e. kubanensis Laubmann, 1915 – Caucasian Rosefinch – N & E Turkey, Caucasus and N & NE Iran; winters to N India.
  • Descriptive notes

    13–15 cm; 19–33 g. Medium-large rosefinch with stubby or bulbous bill and notched tail. Male nominate race breeding has forehead to nape bright scarlet (variable... read more


    Song a regularly and monotonously repeated (in breeding season), slowly rising whistled "weeja... read more


    Lowland to montane moist forests, woodlands and thickets of willows (Salix), alder (... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mostly plant and tree seeds, buds, catkins, shoots, leaves, fruit and berries, also nectar; also insects and larvae and other arthropods.... read more


    Season May–Aug; one brood. Monogamous; occasionally polygamous in areas with apparent excess of immature (brown-plumaged) males; pair... read more


    Migratory and partially migratory. Most movements nocturnal, on spring passage also diurnal, alone... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Common to locally common. Estimated European breeding population between 505,000 and 631,000 pairs, most in Finland and Belarus; up... read more

    Recommended citation

    Clement, P. & Christie, D.A. (2019). Common Rosefinch (Carpodacus erythrinus). 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 14 November 2019).