Family Finches (Fringillidae)

Least Concern

Streaky Seedeater (Crithagra striolata)


French: Serin strié German: Strichelgirlitz Spanish: Serín estriado
Other common names: Streaky Canary

Pyrrhula striolata


, 1840,

Halai and Simen, 8000–10,000 feet [c. 2440–3050 m], Ethiopia


Race whytii distinctive, and sometimes treated as a separate species, but appears to differ only in the strong yellow wash to the pale colours on the head, wings and especially throat; reported smaller size in HBW not noticeable in specimens, and limited evidence from DNA analysis indicates close relationship between nominate and whytii. Proposed race affinis (described from Mt Kilimanjaro, in N Tanzania) synonymized with nominate. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. s. striolata (Rüppell, 1840) – Streaky Seedeater – Eritrea, Ethiopia and extreme SE South Sudan S to W & C Kenya and N Tanzania.
  • C. s. graueri (E. J. O. Hartert, 1907) – E DRCongo, SW Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.
  • C. s. whytii (Shelley, 1897) – Yellow-browed Seedeater – S Tanzania, N Malawi and adjacent NE Zambia.
  • Descriptive notes

    13·5–15 cm; 18–26·5 g. Medium-sized, heavily streaked finch with long, slightly notched tail. Nominate race has forehead to crown brown, finely... read more


    Song variable, a series of clear, downslurred whistles, "tway, tway, tsitsi-peeew, tsiway-tslo... read more


    Lower montane to submontane open country and woodland edge and clearings, moist secondary evergreen... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mostly small seeds, including those of Lobelia giberroa, berries including blackberries (Rubus), and insects, including... read more


    Breeds in all months, mostly Apr–Aug and Oct–Jan, at higher altitudes (above 2200 m) Apr–Jul; up to three broods.... read more


    Resident; some short-distance and random movements in non-breeding season in Apr–May and Aug... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Race whytii, sometimes treated as a full species, is a restricted-range taxon: present in Tanzania-Malawi Mountains EBA. Common to locally... read more

    Recommended citation

    Clement, P. (2019). Streaky Seedeater (Crithagra striolata). 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 November 2019).