Red Browed Finch

Quick Facts

Length: 11 cm
Height: -
Weight: 11 grams
Colour: Red eyebrow, rump and beak on an otherwise green and grey bird
Habitat: Grassy areas with dense understorey vegetation, often along creek lines
Food: Seeds and insects
Predators: -
Status: Secure in VIC, SA, QLD and NSW. Not Present in WA, TAS and NT

The Red-browed Finch is most easily recognised by its bright red eyebrow, rump and beak, on an otherwise green and grey bird. Upperparts are olive green with grey underneath. Both sexes are similar in appearance. Often observed in small flocks, which feed on the grass. They will fly into dense undergrowth when disturbed by a passer-by. Red-browed Finches may also be called Red-browed Firetails.

The Red-browed Finch occurs mostly east of the Great Dividing Range, between Cape York in Queensland and the Mount Lofty Ranges in South Australia

The Red-browed Finch is found in grassy areas interspersed with dense understorey vegetation, often along creek lines.

Largely sedentary.

The Red-browed Finch feeds on seeds and insects on the ground, but sometimes perches on seeding grass heads.

The nest of the Red-browed Finch is large and domed, with a side tunnel for an entrance. It is a rough construction of twigs and grass stems built in a dense shrub between 1 and 2 metres from the ground. Both parents share nest-building, incubation of the eggs and feeding of the young when they hatch.

Its preference for open grassy areas surrounded by dense shrubbery enables the Red-browed Finch to survive well in weedy areas along railway tracks and creek lines, where seeding grasses escape the lawnmower. It may also benefit from bird feeders, provided the seeds are small and larger competitors are excluded.

Author: Rosalyn Plunkett
Last Updated: Thursday 9th January, 2014
BirdLife Australia -


Signup for our monthly newsletter the "e-Telegraph"