Birds in Taiwan
More Birds in Taiwan
Chinese Crested Tern
ON TAIWAN “Endemic Subspecies of Taiwan birds—first impressions”, by N. J.
Collar, from BirdingASIA
No. 2, December 2004. Presented with permission.
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bulletin of the Oriental Bird Club. Please see our Links page for
benefits of membership in the OBC.
Carpodacus vinaceus formosanus
Vinaceous Rosefinch is a medium-sized finch, about 15 cm long.
“Vinaceous” means “wine-coloured.” The adult male is dark crimson with
paler rump, white supercilium, and brownish-black tail and wings. Females
are olive-brown with vertical black specks. Their flight is undulating.
The formosanus subspecies is endemic to Taiwan. They are not shy, and may
be found in broad-leaved forests and open areas at low and high
elevations, but usually at 2000 m and above, sometimes alone, sometimes in
mixed parties with other species.
The call sounds like "zi zi zi." Their diet consists primarily of small
worms and seeds, though occasionally they will scavenge through rubbish
piles to look for food, hence its nickname of "garbage bird.”
Female Vinaceous Rosefinches will often clean the area surrounding their
nests which are constructed of moss and cobwebs.