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Twite Bird

Identification of Twite Bird

Twite Bird 1 Length: 12.5-14cm Wingspan: 22-24cm Call: "chweek"

Twite Bird is a rather demure, streaky little finch with a longish cleft tail and a yellow bill in winter. Similar to a Twite Bird (female) or immature Linnet, it appears darker and has strong tawny-buff tones, particularly on the face and the unmarked throat, and also on the flanks and breast, which contrast with the white belly. Twite Bird is boldly streaked dark on the mantle, and the flanks are heavily streaked from the shoulders, sometimes extending across the centre of the breast. It also has an obvious buff wingbar on the tips of the greater coverts. The male has a pink rump, most obvious in spring, and at all ages shows whitish edges to the tail and flight feathers, much like a Linnet.

Habitat of Twite Bird

Twite Bird is a partial migrant, breeding in upland areas of northern and western Britain and in Norway, wintering along North Sea coasts, in central and eastern Europe and southern Scandinavia. In the breeding season it favours upland grassy fells and treeless heather moors, hill farms, upland pastures, bare coastal heaths and barren mountain slopes at higher altitudes in Norway. In winter it disperses to coastal areas, saltmarshes, dunes and slacks, where it feeds on Salicornia sp. and asters; it will also visit pastures and bare weedy fields.

Song / Call of Twite Bird

Twite Bird 2

Twite Bird has a Linnet-like twittering bouncy flight call, as in "tchp'up'up" or "chut chululutt", plus a monosyllabic "yett", but the call that gives the bird its name is a harsh, bleating and upward-inflected "chweek" or "chwai'it", often audible from some distance. Winter flocks can frequently be heard making a nasal jangling twitter of many call notes run together. The song is quite similar to that of the Linnet but is less musical and more metallic, with wheezy drawn-out nasal notes mixed with buzzing trills, rattles and nasal twanging. It is delivered in short sequences interspersed with pauses, such as "dzhur'iwhee dzheh'wheee'er dzheh'wrrrrrrrrr...", etc.