Return to Main Page   Dakota Birder Blog    

Asian Rosy-Finch

Leucosticte arctoa

Length: 6-7 inches Wingspan: 12.5-14 inches Seasonality: Non-resident in South Dakota
ID Keys: Gray nape, rest of head and chin dark brownish black, dark brownish and black body with rosy flecks

Asian Rosy-Finch - Leucosticte arctoaThe Asian Rosy-Finch is a finch species found in Asia.  Its normal range extends from Japan, Norrth and South Korea, and Kamchatka peninsula in the east, westward through parts of eastern Russia, Mongolia, China, and Kazakhstan.  They are related to the Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, Black Rosy-Finch, and Brown-capped Rosy-Finch of North America.  They are not known to wander long distances and thus were not a species that could normally be expected even as a vagrant in North America.  However, iin late December 2011, a lone Asian Rosy-Finch was sighted on Adak Island in the far western Aleutians, and thus the species was added to the official American Birding Association's checklist of birds that have been sighted in North America.

Habitat: Found in open habitats that may vary depending upon breeding location.  They are often found in and around sub-alpine to alpine meadows (as high as 18,000 feet) that are interspersed with rocky slopes, barren rock, and cliffs.  In some lower elevation coastal areas they may be found on bare rocky beaches.

Diet: Feeds primarily on seeds, but they will also take insects (particularly during the summer breeding season), and may occasionally eat berries and fresh buds and shoots of plants.

Behavior: Most foraging is done on the ground.  They gather seeds while walking and hopping on the ground, and during the summer months will do the same with insects and spiders. 

Nesting: Breeding biology of Asian Rosy-Finches is poorly understood, as the species is little studied, and few nests have been observed.

Song: unknown

Migration: Some populations of Asian Rosy-Finch are likely permanent residents, although those found at higher elevations will move to lower elevations for the winter.  Some more northerly populations may make short migratory flights.

Interactive eBird map: Click here to access an interactive eBird map of Asian Rosy-Finch sightings

Similar Species: Most similar to the Rosy-Finches of North Amerida, including the Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, Black Rosy-Finch, and Brown-capped Rosy-Finch

Conservation Status: Populations have declined substantially in recent decades.  However, they are still found over a very wide geographic range, and are common to even abundant in parts of their breeding range.  The IUCN considers the Asian Rosy-Finch as species of "Least Concern".

Further Information: 1) - Asian Rosy-Finch

2) Birds of Kazakhstan - Asian Rosy-Finch

3) BirdLife International - Asian Rosy-Finch

Photo Information: Photo by Francesco Veronesi - Photo licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAllike 2.0 Generic License


Click below for a higher-resolution map
Asian Rosy-Finch - Range Map
South Dakota Status: Non-resident in South Dakota

Additional Asian Rosy-Finch Photos (coming soon!!)