Hoary Redpoll Identification

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The Four Keys to ID

  • Size & Shape

    A very small songbird with a short, notched tail and a thick-based but very small bill that looks “pushed in” compared to Common Redpoll. Fluffed up plumage often makes this species appear portly.

    Relative Size

    Larger than a Golden-crowned Kinglet, smaller than a House Finch.

    Relative Sizesparrow or smallersparrow-sized or smaller
    • Both Sexes

Regional Differences

Ornithologists recognize two subspecies. The larger, paler hornemanni nests in northern Greenland and Baffin Island. The smaller, somewhat darker exilipes nests in northern Canada and Alaska, as well as in northernmost Eurasia.

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