Common Linnets Feeding In The Garden (including Competition Winner!)

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A few days ago I was photographing the Serins that have flocked around the Quinta and a surprising couple turned up. I say surprising as I’ve never seen them this close to the house before. There are certainly not a rare bird and often see them along the river banks.

The female arrived first and it wasn’t until the male followed soon after that it was obviously a pair of Common Linnets. The male has a pinkish-red breast that really makes him stand out. This will further become saturated as the breeding season starts. They are ground feeders which is why they are currently mixed in with the Serins, this is common behaviour to see mixed Finches in flocks during the winter.

With the scientific name of Linaria cannabina, the Linnet has 6 sub-species, the one found locally in the Iberia, Mediterranean and North West Africa is the Linaria cannabina mediterranea. Like most finches, they are a small bird at around 14cm in length and their diet consists of mainly seeds and buds.

Here is the impressive male….


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Linnets spotted in the garden

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Over the last week I’ve spotted a pair of Linnets in the garden. Our back garden is mainly surrounded by Hawthorn seperating us from farmland so the perfect habitat for many birds including Linnets.

Today I spotted just the male frequenting the electric cable that feeds our house. As the sun was setting I decided to stick the camera out of an upstairs window to get a shot of him. As a complete fluke, he hopped on top of the Hawthorn right in my line of sight and a perfect angle to the setting sun.

I had a 1.4x teleconverter attached to my 500mm f/4 so expected a small amount of sharpness drop-off but still a shot I’m happy with.

There is no sign of the female, but it’s only the female that sits on the nest, so hopefully he’s just keeping lookout and bringing her food.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Male Linnet - D810, AF-S 500mm f/4 with TC-14III @ 700mm, f/8, ISO900, 1/800sec - {Flickr Link}
Male Linnet - D810, AF-S 500mm f/4 with TC-14III @ 700mm, f/8, ISO900, 1/800sec - {Flickr Link}