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Lesser Antillean Bullfinch - BirdForum Opus

Alternative names: West Indian Robin; Red-throated See-see (grenadensis)

Male, subspecies sclateri
Photo © by Richard Fray
St. Lucia, February 2004
Loxigilla noctis


14–15·5 cm (5½-6 in)

Female, subspecies dominicana
Photo © by NJLarsen
Savane Paille, Dominica, September 2008

Overall black to slate-gray color, interrupted by rufous on the throat, just in front of eye, and in most races on undertail coverts (undertail black in Martinique and St. Lucia). The female is a sandy gray-brown with rufous coloring to the wings and tail and greyish underparts. The head of the female is the same color as the mantle. Legs in both sexes are greyish to black, not pink.
Male has black bill in most areas, while female has lower mandible yellowish to pale horn.

Similar species

In St. Lucia, the St. Lucia Black Finch is a species that could be mistaken for Lesser Antillean Bullfinch, however, the black finch has pink legs (more prominent in the male), a heavier beak, has a habit of bobbing its tail up and down, and are more often found low in dense vegetation. The male is entirely without rufous, while the female has gray on its head in contrast to brown back.


Juvenile Male, subspecies dominicana
Photo © by njlarsen
Dominica, June 2004

Used to be endemic to the Lesser Antilles but has now spread to the US Virgin Islands (part of the Puerto Rico bank) and is a vagrant to Puerto Rico. It is absent from the Grenadines but present on Grenada.


Male, subspecies grenadensis
Photo © by njlarsen
Mount Hartman, Grenada, 24 April 2024

Barbados Bullfinch has been split from this species.


There are 8 subspecies[1]:

  • L. n. coryi:
  • L. n. ridgwayi:
  • L. n. desiradensis:
  • L. n. dominicana:
Subspecies ridgwayi
Photo © by Ronsphotos
Near Ffreyes Beach, Antigua, March 2016
  • L. n. noctis:
  • L. n. sclateri:
  • L. n. crissalis:
  • L. n. grenadensis:


Dense and semi-open vegetation, often around houses.


Often incredibly tame, well known for stealing nuts and sugar in outdoor restaurants.


Feeds on nectar, fruits, seeds as well as insects. Forages mainly in trees, sometimes closer to the ground.


Breeding season February to August, January to February in Virgin Islands. The nest is domed with a side entrance, usually placed below 3m above the ground. Lays 2 to 4 eggs.


A sedentary species, possibly with some dispersive movements.


  1. 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/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2011. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 16: Tanagers to New World Blackbirds. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553781
  3. Birdforum thread discussing Barbados Bullfinch

Recommended Citation

External Links

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