Common Firecrest Regulus ignicapilla


Justification of Red List category
This species has an extremely 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 stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely 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
In Europe, the breeding population is estimated to number 4,180,000-7,110,000 pairs, which equates to 8,360,000-14,200,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). Europe forms c.95% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 8,800,000-14,950,000 mature individuals, although further validation of this estimate is needed.

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats. In Europe, trends between 1982 and 2013 have been stable (EBCC 2015).


This species is found in coniferous forest with spruce (Picea) and fir (Abies) and is fairly common in mixed forest, as well as in deciduous stands with only a few mature conifers interspersed. In the Mediterranean region it uses cork oak (Quercus suber) and holly oak (Quercus ilex) stands and in Morocco it inhabits Atlantic cedar (Cedrus atlantica) forest. Breeding begins in April and continues until August. The nest is a typical regulid cup of three layers, made of moss, lichen, feathers and spider web, inner cushion layer with fewer and larger feathers and outer covering of lichens. It is suspended 9–18 m above the ground in the vertical twigs of a conifer or, if no conifers are present, in a climbing plant or in deciduous tree, especially oak. Clutches are six to thirteen eggs. It feeds on arthropods, such as moths and caterpillars (Lepidoptera), aphids (Aphidoidea) and spiders (Araneae). The species is primarily migratory (Martens and Päckert 2015).


There are not thought to be any current significant threats to this species.

Conservation actions

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

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


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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Regulus ignicapilla. Downloaded from on 24/02/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 24/02/2024.