Common Firecrest

The Common Firecrest (Regulus ignicapilla) also known as the Firecrest, is a very small passerine bird in the kinglet family. It breeds in most of temperate Europe and northwestern Africa, and is partially migratory, with birds from central Europe wintering to the south and west of their breeding range. Firecrests in the Balearic Islands and north Africa are widely recognised as a separate subspecies, but the population on Madeira, previously also treated as a subspecies, is now treated as a distinct species, the Madeira Firecrest, Regulus madeirensis. A fossil ancestor of the Firecrest has been identified from a single wing bone.

This kinglet is greenish above and has whitish underparts. It has two white wingbars, a black eye stripe and a white supercilium. The head crest, orange in the male and yellow in the female, is displayed during breeding, and gives rise to the English and scientific names for the species. This bird superficially resembles the Goldcrest, which largely shares its European range, but the Firecrest's bronze shoulders and strong face pattern are distinctive. The song is a repetition of high thin notes, slightly lower-pitched than those of its relative.

The Common Firecrest breeds in broadleaved or coniferous woodland and gardens, building its compact, three-layered nest on a tree branch. Seven to twelve eggs are incubated by the female alone. Both parents feed the chicks, which fledge 22–24 days after hatching. This kinglet is constantly on the move and frequently hovers as it searches for insects to eat, and in winter it is often found with flocks of tits. Despite some possible local declines, the species is not the subject of significant conservation concerns owing to its large European population and an expansion of its range over the last century. It may be hunted and killed by birds of prey, and can carry parasites. It is possible that this species was the original "king of the birds" in European folklore.

Read more about Common FirecrestDescription, Taxonomy, Distribution and Habitat, Predators and Parasites, Status, In Culture

Other articles related to "firecrest, common firecrest":

Kinglet - Taxonomy
... The Madeira Firecrest was formerly considered to be a subspecies, R ... madeirensis, of the Common Firecrest R ... that the Madeiran form is distinct at the species level from the Firecrest nominate subspecies R ...
Common Firecrest - In Culture
... these terms were also applied to the Regulus species, the fiery crowns of the Goldcrest and Firecrest making them more likely to be the original bearers of these titles, and, because of the legend's reference ... In English, the association between the Firecrest and Eurasian Wren was reinforced by the kinglet's old name of "Fire-crested Wren" ...

Famous quotes containing the word common:

    I have more in common with a Mexican man than with a white woman.... This opinion ... chagrins women who sincerely believe our female physiology unequivocally binds all women throughout the world, despite the compounded social prejudices that daily affect us all in different ways. Although women everywhere experience life differently from men everywhere, white women are members of a race that has proclaimed itself globally superior for hundreds of years.
    Ana Castillo (b. 1953)