- Regulus ignicapilla
Includes: Madeira Firecrest
Length 9 cm (3½ in), weight 5-7 g
- Red (male) or orange-red (female) crown with black borders
- Gold forehead
- White supercilium
- Black eye-stripe
- Bronzy patch on shoulder
- Bright olive-gree back
- Whitish underparts
Juvenile similar to adults but without the red crown or black crown border.
Goldcrest lacks the black and white head pattern, and is duller green above, less white below.
In the south breeds in the northern half of Iberia and south of Spain, central and southern France, Italy and parts of the Balkans and Greece, and locally around the Black Sea in parts of northern Turkey and the Caucasus.
Northern and eastern populations are migratory wintering in western Europe and around the Mediterranean, birds from remainder of range are largely resident.
Recorded as a vagrant in Finland.
- R. i. ignicapilla:
- R. i. caucasicus: brighter, with golden neck patch (not considered distinct by some authorities)
- Western Caucasus
- R. i. tauricus: duller and darker (not considered distinct by some authorities)
- R. i. balearicus: has greyer plumage
- R. i. madeirensis: is longer-billed with duller crown stripe and shorter supercilium
Breeds in deciduous, mixed and coniferous forest, also evergreen oak and tree-heath around the Mediterranean. Generally lower to the ground that Goldcrest, often in scrub, thickets and swampy areas.
Similar to Goldcrest, but tends to be a little more mobile, moving faster through shrubs and trees when feeding.
Undulating flight. Often hovers when feeding in the tree canopy.
The diet consists mainly of small insects and spiders.
The nest is suspended under a conifer or other evergreen branch.
Slightly lower pitched than Goldcrest, with a sharper, more incisive sound to some ears. Song lacks the high, pulsating quality that Goldcrest has.
- Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
- Gill, F and D Donsker (Eds). 2014. IOC World Bird Names (version 4.3). Available at http://www.worldbirdnames.org/.
- Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and D Christie, eds. 2006. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 11: Old World Flycatchers to Old World Warblers. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553064
- Collins Field Guide 5th Edition ISBN 0 00 219900 9
- BirdForum Opus contributors. (2021) Firecrest. In: BirdForum, the forum for wild birds and birding. Retrieved 26 July 2021 from https://www.birdforum.net/wiki/Firecrest