FINCH is the common name for a diverse family of perching songbirds that includes crossbills, GROSBEAKS, siskins and redpolls. The finch has a strong, conical bill that it uses to extract seeds from the cones of conifer trees, its favourite food. It also eats BERRIES and INSECTS. In most types the males are bright red; females' plumage is more subtle in colour. Two of the most unusual finches are the red crossbill (Loxia curvirostra) and the white-winged crossbill (L. leucoptera). Both are...

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