Date Published: May 2011
The common redpoll (Carduelis flammea) is a small grey-brown finch with a red wash on the chest and a red cap on the forehead. Females have less red on the chest and the cap is noticeably duller than the males.
This species is very wide-ranging with a circumboreal distribution in northern North America and northern Eurasia. It occurs in Newfoundland, northern Quebec and Labrador, across the rest of northern Canada to Alaska, and through Siberia and northern Russia to northern Europe and Iceland. It is an irregular migrant to lower latitudes in the winter and may occur as far south in the United States as California, Oklahoma, and the Carolinas, and also throughout southern Europe, Russia, the Caucasus, and central China.
Common redpolls were introduced into New Zealand and are now widespread throughout the North and South Islands, as well as offshore islands. The common redpoll is also found on Kermadec, Chatham, Snares, Antipodes, Auckland, Campbell, Lord Howe and Macquarie Islands.
The common redpoll is not globally threatened and is listed as least concern by the IUCN. This species is not listed under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999.
In Tasmania the common redpoll is currently listed as a controlled animal under the Nature Conservation Act 2002.
The natural distribution of the common redpoll includes areas similar in climate to Tasmania and therefore there is potential for this species to establish in Tasmania. If the common redpoll established in Tasmania it is likely to compete with the beautiful firetail for food and other resources. The establishment of the common redpoll in Tasmania also has the potential to impact on fruit growers as this species is known to cause damage to orchards in other countries.
Common Redpoll (Carduelis flammea) (508Kb)