Hooded siskin | American birds

   ›      ›   Hooded siskin - Spinus magellanicus

The hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus) belongs to the family of siskins, canaries and grosbeaks, the Fringillidae.

The hooded siskin is distributed in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela and Guyana. These siskin species are resident and nomadic. These siskins are polytypic species.

Overview & Quick Facts Description & Identification
Pictures of Hooded Siskin Distribution & Range
Ecosystem & Habitat Diet & Feeding Behavior
Breeding Habits Migration & Movement Patterns
Conservation & Survival IUCN Status
Taxonomy & Classification Bird World

Appearance, physical description and identification

The hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus) is a small-sized siskin, measuring 10 to 12 cm in length and weighing 10 to 15 grams.

The hooded siskin has overall bright greenish yellow plumage. The black hood covers the head, face, upper neck and throat. The yellow wings have patches of black. The tail is black with yellow sides. Females lack the hood and are more greenish.

The dark bill is sharp and pointed. The irises are brownish black. There is a black or gray eye-ring. The legs and feet are dark gray. The hooded siskin call is a twittering sound.
Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin female - Spinus magellanicus
1.Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin female - Spinus magellanicus
Image by Haplochromis

Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin - Spinus magellanicus
2Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin - Spinus magellanicus
Image by Dario Sanches

Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin - Spinus magellanicus
3.Birds World - Image of Hooded siskin - Spinus magellanicus
Image by Cláudio Dias Timm

Origin, geographical range and distribution

The hooded siskin is distributed in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile, Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela and Guyana.

The nominate subspecies S. m. magellanicus is distributed in eastern Argentina and Uruguay. The subspecies S. m. ictericus is distributed in southern and eastern regions of Brazil and Paraguay.

The subspecies S. m. alleni is distributed in Bolivia, Paraguay and northeast Argentina. The subspecies S. m. bolivianus is distributed in southern Bolivia.

The siskin subspecies S. m. longirostris occurs in southeast Venezuela, western Guyana and northern Brazil. The subspecies S. m. tucumanus is distributed in western Andes in north Argentina.

The subspecies S. m. hoyi is distributed in central Andes in northwest Argentina. The subspecies S. m. santaecrucis occurs in central Bolivia and S. m. urubambensis occurs in southern Peru and northern Chile.

The siskin subspecies S. m. peruanus is distributed in central Peru. The subspecies S. m. paulus occurs in Peru and Ecuador. The subspecies S. m. capitalis occurs in Andes in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.

Ecosystem and habitat

The hooded siskin species have low forest dependence. They normally occur in altitudes between 0 to 5000 meters. The artificial ecosystems and habitats of these species include plantations and degraded forests.

The natural ecosystems and habitats of these siskin species include tropical and subtropical dry forests and shrublands, temperate forests, grasslands and shrublands, dry savanna and high altitude shrublands.

Diet and feeding behavior

The diet of these hooded siskin species consists mainly of plant matter. Wild seeds, farm cereals, flowers, buds, leaves and small insects are their primary food. These species are found in flocks, feeding in shrubs and on the ground.

Reproduction and breeding habits

The breeding season of these hooded siskin species is possibly year-round. They are monogamous and territorial.

The breeding habitats include small trees and shrubs. The nest is built with plant fibers and grass. The chicks hatch out after 13-15 days of incubation. The parents feed the chicks with regurgitate seeds.

Migration and movement patterns

These hooded siskin species are resident, non-migratory birds. The populations occurring in high altitudes move to lower levels in winter.

Post breeding, the juveniles may disperse and establish in new locations within the range. Within their range they may make local movements for feeding and breeding.

Hooded siskin - Quick Facts

  • Scientific name: Spinus magellanicus
  • Species author: (Vieillot, 1805)
  • Synonyms/Protonym: Fringilla magellanica Vieillot, 1805
  • Family: Fringillidae › Passeriformes › Aves › Chordata › Animalia
  • , Vernacular names: English: Hooded siskin, Chinese: 冠金翅雀, French: Tarin de Magellan, German: Magellanzeisig, Spanish: Jilguero encapuchado, Russian: Черноголовый чиж, Japanese: ズグロヒワ
  • Other names: Hooded Siskin, Southern Siskin
  • Distribution: South America
  • Diet and feeding habits: seeds, leaves, buds, flowers, small insects
  • IUCN status listing: Least Concern (LC)

Conservation and survival

The global population size of the hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus) has not been quantified. The overall population trend of the species is considered to be stable.

In most of its range, this species is reported to be common (Stotz et al. 1996). The generation length is 4.2 years. Its distribution size is about 13,400,000 sq.km.

Habitat alteration, human disturbance and trapping adults and juveniles for pet-trade are the main threats that are endangering the survival of this species.

IUCN and CITES status

The hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus) does not approach the thresholds for being Vulnerable, either under the range size criterion, or under the population trend criterion or under the population size criterion.

The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) has categorized and evaluated the siskin species and has listed it as of "Least Concern".

The CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) status is ‘Not Evaluated’ for the hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus).
Taxonomy and scientific classification of Spinus magellanicus
Species:S. magellanicus
Binomial name:Spinus magellanicus
IUCN status listing:
Least Concern
The hooded siskin (Spinus magellanicus) is closely related to the olivaceous siskin (Spinus olivaceus).
The twelve recognized subspecies of the Spinus magellanicus are:
S. m. magellanicus (Vieillot, 1805), lowland hooded siskin,
S. m. capitalis (Cabanis, 1866),
S. m. paulus Todd, 1926,
S. m. ictericus (M. H. C. Lichtenstein, 1823),
S. m. peruanus Berlepsch & Stolzmann, 1896,
S. m. alleni Ridgway, 1899,
S. m. urubambensis Todd, 1926,
S. m. bolivianus (Sharpe, 1888),
S. m. santaecrucis Todd, 1926,
S. m. longirostris (Sharpe, 1888),
S. m. tucumanus Todd, 1926 and
S. m. hoyi (König, 1981).
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1.Hooded siskin image source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Carduelis_magellanica.JPG (cropped)
Image author: Haplochromis | License: CC BY-SA 3.0 as on 10/13/18
2.Image source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:PINTASSILGO_(_Carduelis_magellanica_).jpg (cropped)
Image author: Dario Sanches | License: CC BY-SA 2.0 as on 10/13/18
3.Image source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Carduelis_magellanica_icterica_male_1.jpg (cropped)
Image author: Cláudio Dias Timm | License: CC BY-SA 2.0 as on 10/13/18
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