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Merlin Bird ID

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    Verdin Life History


    Habitat ScrubDesert scrub, especially along washes where thorny vegetation is present.Back to top


    Food InsectsInsects and spiders.Back to top


    Nest Placement

    Nest Shrub

    Nest Description

    Large sphere with a hole usually located near the bottom. Outer shell of sticks, lined with leaves and smaller twigs. Placed in shrub.

    Nesting Facts
    Clutch Size:3-6 eggs
    Egg Description:Light greenish, with irregular dark reddish spots, especially at larger end.
    Condition at Hatching:Helpless and naked.
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    Behavior Foliage GleanerMoves actively and nimbly among limbs of scrub vegetation, in a manner resembling that of chickadees. Often holds blossoms with feet while looking and picking at prey with bill.Back to top


    Conservation Common Bird in Steep DeclineVerdin populations declined by over 2% per year between 1966 and 2014, resulting in a cumulative decline of 65%, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 8 million with 58% occurring in Mexico, and 42% in the U.S. The species rates an 11 out of 20 on the Partners in Flight Continental Concern Score. Verdin is a U.S.-Canada Stewardship species, and the 2014 State of the Birds Report listed it as a Common Bird in Steep Decline. Land development in southern California has reduced Verdin habitat, and has resulted in the possible extirpation of the species from San Diego County, California.Back to top


    North American Bird Conservation Initiative. 2014. The State of the Birds 2014 Report. US Department of Interior, Washington, DC, USA.

    Partners in Flight. 2017. Avian Conservation Assessment Database. 2017.

    Sauer, J. R., J. E. Hines, J. E. Fallon, K. L. Pardieck, Jr. Ziolkowski, D. J. and W. A. Link. The North American Breeding Bird Survey, results and analysis 1966-2013 (Version 1.30.15). USGS Patuxtent Wildlife Research Center 2014b. Available from

    Sibley, David Allen. 2014. The Sibley guide to birds, second edition. Alfred A Knopf, New York.

    Webster, Marcus D. 1999. Verdin (Auriparus flaviceps), version 2.0. In The Birds of North America (P. G. Rodewald, editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, USA.

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