Hawfinch

Scientific name: Coccothraustes coccothraustes

Hawfinch

Did you know: The Hawfinch can exert a force equivalent to 30-48 kg with its jaw muscles, allowing it to effortlessly crack even the hardest of seeds!

What Do Hawfinches Look Like? (how to identify them)

Hawfinches, the UK’s largest finches, are renowned for their hefty bill and robust appearance. They are often elusive, blending into their woodland habitats with a plumage of cream, buff, brown, grey, orange, blue, black, and white. Their unique beak, brown in summer and paler in winter, is a striking feature.

Differences Between Male And Female Hawfinches

Distinguishing between male and female Hawfinches can be subtle, as both share similar colouration. However, females tend to have slightly paler plumage, making them discernible upon closer observation.

What Do Hawfinches Eat?

These birds have a diverse diet primarily consisting of seeds, buds, and shoots. They are particularly adept at cracking open cherry stones and similar hard seeds with their powerful beaks.

Where Do Hawfinches Live? (inc. migration info)

Hawfinches favour deciduous or mixed woodlands, especially those with hornbeam trees. While many remain resident in Europe, Asian populations often migrate south in winter. They are a common sight in the UK’s woodland areas, although their numbers have seen a decline in recent years.

Bird Calls & Songs (the unique voices of Hawfinches)

The call of a Hawfinch is a distinctive hard ‘chick’, and their song, often quiet and mumbled, adds a subtle soundtrack to their woodland habitats.

Fun Hawfinch Facts (kid friendly)

  • Hawfinches can crack seeds as hard as cherry stones!
  • They have one of the strongest beaks in the bird world.
  • These birds are the UK’s largest finch species.
  • Hawfinches’ wingspans can reach up to 33cm.
  • They are known for being shy and elusive.
  • In flight, their white wing bars and tail tips are eye-catching.
  • Hawfinches often stay in pairs or small groups.
  • They build their nests in bushes or trees.
  • Despite their powerful beaks, their song is surprisingly soft.
  • Hawfinches are part of a global family, with relatives as far as East Asia and North America.

Hawfinch Images

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Male
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Female
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Hatchling
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Nestling
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Chick
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Fledgling
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Juvenile

Facts About The Hawfinch

Diet: Seeds, buds and shoots.
Bird Family: Finches
Length: 18cm
Wingspan: 29-33cm
Weight: 48-62g
Scientific Name: Coccothraustes coccothraustes

The Hawfinch Can Be Seen In The UK During The Following Months

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December