Pyrrhula pyrrhula

RSPB Conservation Status – Amber

Last seen – 9-2-23

The Bullfinch is a stunning bird with a distinctive appearance and melodious song.

The male bullfinch is unmistakable with his bright pinkish-red breast and cheeks, grey back, black cap and tail, and bright white rump.

They feed voraciously on the buds of various trees in spring and were once a ‘pest’ of fruit crops.



Population – 265,000 breeding pairs

Length – 14 – 16 cm

Wingspan – 22 – 26 cm

Weight – 18 – 27 g


The Bullfinch’s breeding season typically starts in April or May, depending on the location.

It builds its nest in a dense bush or tree, and both males and females take turns incubating the eggs, which hatch after around 12-14 days.

The chicks are fed by both parents and fledge after around 12-14 days.


The Bullfinch can be found in a wide variety of habitats, including woodlands, hedgerows, gardens, and parks.

It prefers areas with dense undergrowth and shrubs, where it can find shelter and nesting sites.



The Bullfinch is primarily a seed-eating bird, feeding on a wide variety of seeds including those of birch, alder, and conifers.

It is particularly fond of fruit, and can often be seen feeding on berries such as hawthorn and blackthorn.

During the winter, it can often be seen feeding on garden bird feeders, particularly those containing seeds such as sunflower hearts and niger.

If you have seen a Bullfinch, please let us know via our survey page.