Citril Finch Carduelis citrinella


Justification of Red List category
This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (extent of occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be decreasing, but the decline is not thought to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
The breeding population, which is confined to Europe, is estimated to number 250,000-283,000 pairs, which equates to 500,000-565,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015).

Trend justification
The population size is estimated to be decreasing by less than 25% in 13.2 years (three generations) (BirdLife International 2015).


This species is generally found in montane and submontane woods of spruce (Picea), larch (Larix) and pine (Pinus), usually along the edges and in clearings. It also inhabits scattered clumps of conifers in otherwise open areas, as well as alpine meadows, ski-runs, roadside edges, and around alpine huts and gardens in towns. In the non-breeding season it is found in similar habitats in sheltered valleys at lower levels. Breeding begins at the end of March to mid-April and continues until August. The nest is a cup of dry grass, plant fibres, lichens, animal hair, feathers and occasionally wool or paper and usually placed up to 30 m above the ground against the trunk of a tall tree or at the tip of strong horizontal branches. Clutches are three to five eggs (Clement and de Juana 2016). It feeds on small to medium sized seeds and sometimes green material from a wide range of plants and some insects (Snow and Perrins 1998). The species is a partial short-distance migrant and an altitudinal migrant (Clement and de Juana 2016).


This species is threatened by the future effects of climate change (Maggini et al. 2014).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
Bern Convention Appendix II. There are currently no known specific conservation measures for this species.

Conservation Actions Proposed
No conservation measures are currently needed for this species.


Text account compilers
Ekstrom, J., Butchart, S. & Ashpole, J

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Carduelis citrinella. Downloaded from on 01/03/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 01/03/2024.