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Serinus syriacus

warning Vulnerable
VU (D1)

Contributed: Asaf Mayrose, Lior Kislev, Avner Rinot

The Syrian Serin is classified as Vulnerable (VU) because its breeding population in Israel is very small (less than 250) and declining. It is also globally Vulnerable (VU). In the previous edition of the Red Book (2002), it was classified as Near Threatened (NT). The change in its threat category reflects the deterioration in the population as well as changes in assessment methods and the consideration of marginal populations at the limit of their global range. The species is endemic to our region and considerable parts of the global population breeds on Mt. Hermon and overwinters throughout the Negev.
VU Current Regional Assessment | NT Previous Regional Assessment | VU World Assessment

Habitats Mountainous Forest
Presence In Israel Summer Breeder, Winter Visitor
Nesting In Israel Breeder
Migration Types Short Range / Partial
Zoography Zones Alpine
Landscape Formations Mountainous
Vegetation Formations Mediterranean Maquis, Mediterranean Garrigue
Vegetation Densities Medium, High
Nest Locations Tree, Bushes
Diet Types Herbivore
Foraging Grounds Ground, Trees and Shrubs
Body Sizes Small (up to 500g)
Threat Factors Habitat Fragmentation, Direct Persecution

The Syrian Serin is a small finch, endemic to our region. The male has a yellow forehead, belly and back and bluish-grey cheeks and nape. The female is a bit paler and more streaked.

About 100-150 pairs of Syrian Serin breed on Mt. Hermon, at altitudes between 1,200 and 1,800 meters (Israeli & Perlman 2013). In the 1980s, the population was estimated at about 180 pairs (Ezov 1986). In winter, small numbers can be seen in Judea, Samaria, in the Negev, the Arava and the Eilat Mountains.

The Syrian Serin inhabits rocky mountain slopes with sparse deciduous woodland.

The Syrian Serin is endemic to our region. It nests in the in the Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon mountains, Mt. Hermon and the Edom Mountains. The populations migrate south in summer, including to the Negev and the Sinai Peninsula.

The Syrian Serin is threatened by development work at the upper Mt. Hermon, including roadbuilding, ski run development and other installations. It is also trapped for the pet trade. In the Moab and Edom mountains in Jordan, it has been affected by overgrazing and a series of drought years (BirdLife 2017).

No specific conservation measures have been taken for this species to date.

Development work on Mt. Hermon should be reduced and supervised to minimize harm to natural habitats.

Development work on Mt. Hermon should be reduced and supervised to minimize harm to natural habitats.

  • ישראלי, נ. ופרלמן, י. 2013. סיכום סקר עופות מקננים בחרמון. דו"ח מרכז הצפרות של החברה להגנת הטבע.
  • פז, ע. 1986. עופות. מתוך אלון, ע. (עורך), החי והצומח של ארץ ישראל. כרך 6. הוצאת משרד הביטחון, ישראל.
  • שוחט, א., פרלמן, י., שני, א., עובדיה, ע., ישראלי, נ., פרלמן, ג. ואלון, ד. 2009. טיבוע ציפורים ארוך טווח בחרמון: תמורות בהרכב החברה ובדינאמיקה של אוכלוסיות.
Contributed: Asaf Mayrose, Lior Kislev, Avner Rinot

Current Occupancy Map

Distribution maps

The maps presented here provide visual information on the distribution of species in Israel in the past and present, and the changes in occupancy and nesting density during the comparison period. For further reading

Relative Abundance 2010-2020

Breeding density values as calculated from observation records and expert opinions.

Relative Abundance 1980-1990

Breeding density values are based mainly on the book Birds of Israel (Shirihai 1996).

Occupancy difference 1990-2020

A map that expresses differences in the breeding distribution between the evaluation periods (1980-1990 versus 2010-2020). Negative value - species previously present but is currently absent, positive value - species has not been recorded previously and is currently present, zero - no change in occupancy.

Relative abundance difference 1990-2020

A map that reflects the changes in the relative abundance of the species between the evaluation periods (1980-1990 versus 2010-2020). Negative values - decline in abundance, positive values - increase in abundance, zero - no change in abundance.

Red number

IUCN category

() districts
% of protected sites

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