Desert finch

In the arid expanse of the desert sands, a resilient creature makes its home – the Desert Finch. With feathers as golden as the sun that beats down upon the dunes, this bird is a true master of survival in an unforgiving landscape.

Serial NumberCharacteristicsDescription
1Common nameDesert Finch
2Scientific nameRhodospiza obsoleta
3ColourSandy-brown upperparts, white underparts with black streaks on the breast and flanks
4Average length12-14 cm
5Average height6-7 cm
6Type of birdDesert
7Found in India in statesNot found in India
8HabitatSandy and stony deserts, semi-deserts, and arid areas
9StatusLeast Concern


The Desert Finch, also known as Rhodospiza obsoleta, is a small bird that is found in the desert regions of North Africa and the Middle East.

The Desert Finch has a plump body with a short tail and a conical beak. It has a round head with a small neck and short, stubby wings. It has a distinctive black and white striped pattern on its face, with a white stripe running across its forehead, black patches around its eyes, and a white throat. The bird has a brownish-grey plumage on its back and wings, with a pale belly.

The Desert Finch has a predominantly brownish-grey plumage, which is ideal for camouflage in the desert environment. The black and white stripes on its face and neck add a distinctive pattern to its appearance.

The Desert Finch is a small bird, measuring approximately 11-12 centimeters in length and weighing around 12-15 grams. Its height when perched is around 4-5 centimeters.

Habitat and Food

Desert Finch is a hardy bird that has evolved to survive in a challenging environment. The Desert Finch, also known as the Burchell’s Finch inhabits dry, arid regions such as the deserts of North Africa and the Middle East. They are also found in rocky habitats and semi-deserts with sparse vegetation.

Desert Finches are primarily granivorous, meaning they eat seeds as their primary source of food. Their diet consists mainly of grasses, seeds, and occasionally insects. They have strong beaks that are adapted to cracking open tough seed shells, allowing them to access the nutrient-rich seeds inside.

In addition to their seed-based diet, Desert Finches also obtain water from various sources such as dew, succulent plants, and occasionally even drinking water from puddles or streams when available. They are well adapted to the desert environment, and their ability to survive on very little water has allowed them to thrive in arid regions where other bird species cannot.

Nesting and Nurturing

Desert Finches are ground nesters and they build their nests on the ground in protected areas such as under shrubs or rocks. The nest is usually a shallow scrape in the soil, sometimes lined with grass, twigs, and other vegetation.

The female Desert Finch lays a clutch of 3 to 6 eggs. The eggs are typically pale blue or green with reddish-brown speckles. The size of the eggs is approximately 18mm x 14mm. The eggs are incubated by the female for about 12 to 14 days.

Both parents participate in the care of the hatchlings, feeding them insects and seeds. The young birds fledge after about 12 to 15 days and become independent a few days after leaving the nest.

IUCN Status

The Desert Finch, also known as Rhodospiza obsoleta, is currently listed as a species of Least Concern on the IUCN Red List. Its population trend is thought to be stable, and it is not considered to face any major threats at present.

However, as with any species, continued monitoring and conservation efforts are important to ensure that its status does not decline in the future.

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