Webb, Berthelot & Moquin-Tandon, 1841
The Blue Chaffinch (Fringilla teydea) is a species of passerine bird in the finch family Fringillidae. It is endemic to the islands of Tenerife and Gran Canaria in Spain's Canary Islands. This bird is the natural symbol of the island of Tenerife, together with the Canary Islands Dragon Tree.
This bird is found only in the highlands of the islands of Tenerife and Gran Canaria. It has two subspecies, F. t. tydea from Tenerife and F. t. polatzeki from Gran Canaria. Its primary habitat is mountain Canary Island Pine (Pinus canariensis) forest. It is most common in coniferous forest areas with dense undergrowth, but it is also found in laurel and pine woodland, tree-heath, and scrub. It prefers habitat at around 1100–2000 m, but it will descend lower in bad weather.
Blue Chaffinches resemble Common Chaffinches, but they are noticeably larger, and have a thicker bill. They are characteristically more uniform in their plumage, and they lack a dark cap. Females are a dull grey-brown, but can be distinguished from Chaffinches by their weaker wing bars. Breeding males are unmistakable, with the namesake largely blue plumage and a grey bill.
Their song is shorter and weaker than that of the Chaffinch, and the flight call is croakier. Blue Chaffinches primarily eat Canary Island Pine seeds, but, unlike most other finches, its young are fed extensively on insects. Breeding from May to July, it builds its nest in a tree fork, and lays two eggs. This bird is not migratory. This species may form small flocks outside the breeding season, sometimes associating with Chaffinches and other finches.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Fringilla teydea". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 16 July 2012.
- Ley 7/1991, de 30 de abril, de símbolos de la naturaleza para las Islas Canarias - in spanish
- Clement, Peter; Harris, Alan; Davis, John (1993). Finches and Sparrows. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. pp. 167–168. ISBN 0-691-03424-9.