This page demonstrates and discusses a putative identification
feature for Pine Siskin (Carduelis
While examining photos of PISI and EUSI as I developed my green-morph
PISI page, I noticed something that may have merit as a means
of separating the two forms, when detail of the folded primary
tips is available. Here is the green-morph PISI from Fort Worth:
- note the pattern of primary tips visible beyond the bunched
secondaries: three tips are separated by two equidistant gaps,
then the next "tip-gap" is slightly longer, followed
by a very large tip-gap - the longest on the wing; the final tip-gap
is again small - somewhat similar to those nearer the bunched
Here are some EUSI images that I have copied from "Photographic
Guide to the Birds of Britain and Europe" by Delin and Svensson;
if any of the authors, publishers, or photographers want their
photos removed, please email me.
1) by G.D. and Y.S. Dean:
- note that, starting at the secondaries, the tip-gaps get progressively
larger, but are otherwise similar to PISI, however at the very
tip, there are an extra couple of tips visible (compared to PISI),
with very short tip-gaps. here's another photo of a male by Michael
- again note the progressively larger tip-gaps near the secondaries,
and at least one extra tip (compared to PISI) with a short tip-gap.
Finally, a third bird by Richard T. Mills:
- here there is at least one extra visible tip, compared to PISI.
Update; Jan 19, 20001: thanks to
Bruce Mactavish, I can add a few images of EUSI from Bangor, Northern
Ireland, courtesy of Anthony McGeehan:
- detail of the wing-tips are somewhat rectricted, but they fit
the pattern described above for EUSI, which appears to be distinct
from that of PISI.
I have checked about 8 photos of PISI, and the four birds currently
coming to my feeders; all have a similar wing structure to the
green-morph PISI above, except one bird at my feeder does show
one extra primary tip just barely peaking out by a tiny fraction
- nowhere near as obviously as on the above EUSIs.
My sample is very small (these are all the photos of EUSI that
I could find showing the P-pattern), so I hope to get more data/feedback
from others. As always, I would value informed
comment on this page - please indicate whether your comments
are to be considered private/anonymous - thank you.