Distribution / Breeding:
It breeds in central Asia. It is migratory, wintering in India. Its status in western Europe, where it is a potential vagrant, is confused by escapes, especially as this species is more commonly recorded than the closely related Black-headed Bunting, despite the latter have a more westerly breeding range.
Red-headed Bunting breeds in open scrubby areas including agricultural land. It lays 3-5 eggs in a nest in a tree or bush.
Its natural food consists of insects when feeding young, and otherwise seeds.
This bird is 17cm long, larger than Reed Bunting, and long-tailed. The breeding male has bright yellow underparts, green upperparts and a brownish-red face and breast.
The female is a washed-out version of the male, with paler underparts, a grey-brown back and a greyish head. The juvenile is similar, and both can be difficult to separate from the corresponding plumages of Black-headed Bunting.
Call / Song:
The song, given from a high perch, is a jerky sweet-sweet-churri-churri-churri.
- BirdLife International (2004). Emberiza bruniceps. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. Retrieved on 12 May 2006. Database entry includes justification for why this species is of least concern
- Buntings and Sparrows by Byers, Olsson and Curson, ISBN 1-873403-19-4
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