Overview

Distribution

endemic to a single nation

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National Distribution

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

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Global Range: (20,000-2,500,000 square km (about 8000-1,000,000 square miles)) BREEDS: mountains from central Idaho, southwestern and south-central Montana, and northwestern and north-central Wyoming south to southeastern Oregon, northeastern and east-central Nevada (south to the Snake Mountains), and central Utah (to the Tushar and La Sal mountains). Beartooth Mounatins have more than 30% of the global population. WINTERS: central Idaho and western and southeastern Wyoming south to eastern California (at least casually), southern Nevada, northern Arizona, and northern New Mexico (AOU 1983).

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Range

Mts. of Idaho and Montana to Nevada and Utah; winters to Arizona.

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Physical Description

Size

Length: 16 cm

Weight: 27 grams

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Type Information

Cotype for Leucosticte arctoa atrata
Catalog Number: USNM 60638
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin: Whole
Collector(s): H. Schmidt
Year Collected: 1870
Locality: Uinta Mountains, N Side, Summit, Utah, United States, North America
  • Cotype: Ridgway. July 18, 1874. American Sportsman. 4 (16): 241.
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Cotype for Leucosticte arctoa atrata
Catalog Number: USNM 162695
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Vertebrate Zoology, Division of Birds
Sex/Stage: Male; Adult
Preparation: Skin: Whole
Collector(s): C. Aiken
Year Collected: 1874
Locality: Canon City, Fremont, Colorado, United States, North America
  • Cotype: Ridgway. July 18, 1874. American Sportsman. 4 (16): 241.
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Ecology

Habitat

Comments: Barren, rocky or grassy areas and cliffs among glaciers or beyond timberline; in migration and winter also in open situations, fields, cultivated lands, brushy areas, and around human habitation (AOU 1983). May roost in mine shaft or similar protected site. Nests usually in rock crevices or holes in cliffs above snow fields. May nest in old abandoned building.

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Habitat and Ecology

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Migration

Non-Migrant: No. All populations of this species make significant seasonal migrations.

Locally Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

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Trophic Strategy

Comments: Forages on the ground for seeds. In the spring gleans wind-transported insects from the snow. Later in the season may glean insects from vegetation or may chase flying insects and catch them in the air.

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Associations

Known prey organisms

Leucosticte atrata (Black Rosy finch) preys on:
alpine vegetation
Hemiptera
Coleoptera
Diptera
Hymenoptera

Based on studies in:
USA: Montana (Tundra)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • D. L. Pattie and N. A. M. Verbeek, Alpine birds of the Beartooth Mountains, Condor 68:167-176 (1966); Alpine mammals of the Beartooth Mountains, Northwest Sci. 41(3):110-117 (1967).
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Known predators

Leucosticte atrata (Black Rosy finch) is prey of:
Falco mexicanus

Based on studies in:
USA: Montana (Tundra)

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
  • D. L. Pattie and N. A. M. Verbeek, Alpine birds of the Beartooth Mountains, Condor 68:167-176 (1966); Alpine mammals of the Beartooth Mountains, Northwest Sci. 41(3):110-117 (1967).
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Population Biology

Number of Occurrences

Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.

Estimated Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80

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Global Abundance

10,000 to >1,000,000 individuals

Comments: Probably >10,000 but <20,000.

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General Ecology

Males typically outnumber females in breeding and wintering populations. During breeding season male defends "territory" around female wherever she moves (Ryser 1985). Forms large flocks when not breeding.

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Life History and Behavior

Life Expectancy

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 5.7 years (wild)
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Reproduction

Clutch size usually is 4-5. Incubation lasts 12-14 days, by female. Young are tended by both adults, leave nest at about 20 days.

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Conservation

Conservation Status

National NatureServe Conservation Status

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N4 - Apparently Secure

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NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G4 - Apparently Secure

Reasons: This species has moderate numbers of occurrences, limited range, and is somewhat numerous. However, approximately 30% of the population is concentrated in a single occurrence, the Beartooth Mountains. Most occurrences are on public lands, and development in alpine areas (e.g., mining) has apparently not caused population declines. Overall, it apparently secure.

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IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
BirdLife International

Reviewer/s
Butchart, S. & Symes, A.

Contributor/s

Justification
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 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 may be moderately small to large, but it is not believed to 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.
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Global Short Term Trend: Relatively stable (=10% change)

Comments: Apparently stable.

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Population

Population Trend
Stable
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Threats

Degree of Threat: D : Unthreatened throughout its range, communities may be threatened in minor portions of the range or degree of variation falls within natural variation

Comments: Only known threat is new massive mining which could level many square miles of breeding habitat.

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Management

Global Protection: Few to very many (1 to >40) occurrences appropriately protected and managed

Comments: The major populations are in designated Wilderness Areas.

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Wikipedia

Black Rosy Finch

The black rosy finch, or black rosy-finch, (Leucosticte atrata) is a species of passerine bird in the family Fringillidae native to the western United States.

Taxonomy[edit]

The black rosy finch was first classified by American ornithologist Robert Ridgway in 1874.[1] This bird has been thought to form a superspecies with the three other rosy finches: gray-crowned rosy finch (L. tephrocotis) and the brown-capped rosy finch (L. australis), all of which were classified as the same species as the Asian rosy finch (L. arctoa) from 1983-1993.[2][3][4] Recent mitochondrial DNA evidence shows the rosy finches are all indeed very closely related and can be easily confused with one another.[3][5] Along with four Asian rosy finches, the three North American rosy finches form the mountain finch genus Leucosticte. There are no recognized subspecies of the black rosy finch.[4] Alternative common names include: roselin (in French), Rußschneegimpel (in German), and pinzón montano negro (in Spanish).[6]

Description[edit]

Adults are black on the head, back and breast with pink on the belly, rump and wings. There is a patch of grey at the back of the head. They have short black legs and a long forked tail.[7][8] The gray-crowned rosy finch has a brown body instead of black and the brown-capped rosy finch and lacks the gray patch on the back of the head.[8]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

The black rosy finch's breeding habitat is mountain areas above the tree-line, amongst alpine rocks and cliffs. Because of this it is one of the least studied birds in North America.[3] Its distribution range is between that of the gray-crowned rosy finch (L. tephrocotis), which is located to north and west, and the brown-capped rosy finch (L. australis), which is located to the south and east.[3]

Behavior[edit]

The black rosy finch builds a cup nest in a cavity on a cliff. Most birds migrate short distances to lower elevations and further south and return to the alpine areas in April.[3] These birds forage on the ground, may fly to catch insects in flight. They mainly eat seeds from weeds and grasses and insects,[2] often in areas where snow is melting, uncovering food items and new plant shoots are growing.[3] They often feed in small flocks, sometimes mixing with gray-crowned rosy finches.[7] A male will defend its female's territory during breeding season, not just the nest but where ever she goes. This behavior is common with the rosy finches.[2][9] When breeding both males and females develop throat pouches, known as gular pouches or gular skin, to carry food to their chicks,[10][11] a trait seen in only one other North American genus, Pinicola.[3] Due to their inaccessibility, actual black rosy finch nests had been reached by only three researchers as of 2002.[5] The nests are made of grass and stems and lined with fine grass, hair, and feathers. They are known to use protected areas such as openings in cliffs, mine shafts, caves, and rafters. They eat seeds and insects, usually foraged from the ground, including snowfields.[2] Their call is a buzz-sounding "chew".[12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b BirdLife International (2012). "Leucosticte atrata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Black Rosy-Finch". All About Birds (life), The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Black Rosy-Finch". Birds of North America, The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. doi:10.2173/bna.678. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b Wright, Rick. "Notes on Rosy-Finch Taxonomy, Distribution, and Identification". Arizona Field Ornithologists. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Black Rosy-Finch - Leucosticte atrata". Montana Field Guide. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Black Rosy-finch (Leucosticte atrata)". Internet Bird Collection. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  7. ^ a b Ottaviani, Michel (2008). Monographie des Fringilles, Volume 1: Fringillinés - Carduélinés: Histoire Naturelle et Photographies (in French). France: Editions Prin. ISBN 978-2-909136-20-2. 
  8. ^ a b "Black Rosy-Finch". All About Birds (identification), The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch - Leucosticte tephrocotis". Montana Field Guide. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch". Bird Web. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch". Bird-Friend. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Black Rosy-Finch". All About Birds (sounds), The Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Retrieved July 4, 2011. 

Further reading[edit]

Book[edit]

  • Johnson, R. E. 2002. Black Rosy-Finch (Leucosticte atrata). In The Birds of North America, No. 678 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.

Articles[edit]

  • Behle WH. (1973). Further Notes on Rosy Finches Wintering in Utah. Wilson Bulletin. vol 85, no 3. pp. 344–346.
  • Bjorklund CF. (1991). Black Rosy Finch Sighting on Big Muddy Cbc. Blue Jay. vol 49, no 3.
  • Bull EL & Wales BC. (2001). Effects of disturbance on birds of conservation concern in eastern Oregon and Washington. Northwest Sci. vol 75, pp. 166–173.
  • Hendricks P. (1978). Notes on the Courtship Behavior of Brown-Capped Rosy Finches. Wilson Bulletin. vol 90, no 2. pp. 285–287.
  • Johnson RE. (1975). New Breeding Localities for Leucosticte in the Contiguous Western USA. Auk. vol 92, no 3. pp. 586–589.
  • Johnson RE. (1977). Seasonal Variation in the Genus Leucosticte in North America. Condor. vol 79, no 1. pp. 76–86.
  • Lichtwardt, Eric (2000). Rare, local, little-known and declining North American breeders, a closer look: Black Rosy-finch Birding 32(5): 402-408
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Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: Prior to 1983, North American rosy-finches were regarded as three species (L. ATRATA, L. AUSTRALIS, and L. TEPHROCOTIS). AOU (1983) lumped these together with Asian species as L. ARCTOA. Subsequently, Sibley and Monroe (1990, who cited unpublished genetic, biochemical, and morphological data by French and Loskot) and AOU (1993, who stated that the 1983 merger was based on insufficient new information) again recognized three species of rosy-finches in North America, distinct from Old World L. ARCTOA.

The three North American species sometimes have been merged as L. TEPHROCOTIS (American Rosy-Finch). Unpublished work by Johnson (1972) recognized a fourth North American species (L. GRISEONUCHA, comprising nominal subspecies GRISEONUCHA and UMBRINA of the Pribilof and Aleutian islands), but this taxon has not been accepted as a full species in subsequent checklists.

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