Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

European Serin (Serinus serinus)


French: Serin cini German: Girlitz Spanish: Serín verdecillo

Fringilla Serinus


, 1766,



Recent molecular studies suggest that this species is probably closest to S. pusillus, S. canicollis, S. syriacus and S. canaria, especially the last of these#R#R. Monotypic.


Europe (except British Is and almost entire Fennoscandia) E to E Baltic, W Russia and Belarus, S to Mediterranean islands, N, W & CS Turkey, Canary Is (Tenerife, Gran Canaria), N Africa (N & C Morocco E to N Tunisia and NW & NE Libya), W Syria, Israel and W Jordan#R; winters SW & S Europe and N Africa E to N Egypt and Levant, also Iraq.

Descriptive notes

11–12 cm; 8·5–14 g. Small and compact streaky finch with short stubby bill, short rounded wings, slightly forked tail and bright yellow rump. Male has... read more


Song, usually from prominent perch (e.g. top of tree, tall post, TV aerial, or roadside powerlines... read more


Lowland to lower montane mosaic of wooded hills with conifers and open country, maquis slopes with... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly seeds, buds, shoots, flowers and small invertebrates. Seeds, buds and flowers include those of alder (Alnus), birch (... read more


Season Feb to early Aug; usually single-brooded, but two broods frequent in parts of C Europe. Monogamous. Solitary or in loose semi-... read more


Resident and migratory. Post-breeding dispersal by juveniles from mid-Jul; breeding birds from C... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Common or locally common. Breeding population in Europe in 1990s estimated at between 10,000,000 and 13,000,000 pairs, with most in... read more

Recommended citation

Clement, P. (2020). European Serin (Serinus serinus). 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 28 January 2020).