Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

Island Canary (Serinus canaria)


French: Serin des Canaries German: Kanarengirlitz Spanish: Serín canario
Other common names: Atlantic Canary

Fringilla Canaria


, 1758,

Canary Islands


Thought to be closely related to S. serinus, S. syriacus and S. canicollis, and one recent molecular phylogeny recovered this species as sister to S. serinus#R. Monotypic.


Azores, Madeira and Canary Is. Introduced and well established in Hawaii#R.

Descriptive notes

12·5–13·5 cm; 15–20 g. Small yellowish-green finch with forked tail. Male has forehead and supercilium golden-yellow, forecrown to nape greenish-... read more


Song, often from within treetop or from open songpost, a rapid series of rich, varied, sweet,... read more


Wide variety of lowland and submontane forests of pine (Pinus), laurel (Lauraceae), and... read more

Food and feeding

Predominantly seeds, mostly of herbs and grasses, also some buds and fruit, and small number of insects. Seeds, buds, shoots and fruits... read more


Season Jan–Jul; two or three broods (only two in Azores). Monogamous. Territorial male performs stiff-winged butterfly-like display-... read more


Resident, with short-distance dispersal. Between late Aug–Oct and Feb–Mar flocks wander... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Restricted range species: present in Madeira and the Canary Islands EBA and Azores Secondary Area. Common to locally common; scarce and local in E... read more

Recommended citation

Clement, P. (2020). Island Canary (Serinus canaria). 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 19 February 2020).