The crimson finch (white-bellied) measures about 13 cm long, has a wing-span of 16-17 cm, and a mass of about 10 g. The plumage of adults differs between the sexes. Adult males have a bright red face, bill, throat and breast, and have bright red flanks with white spotting. Neochmia phaeton evangelinae (crimson finch (white-bellied)). They have greyish-brown colouring on the crown and back of the head, the rear and sides of the neck, back and shoulders, and the upper surfaces of the wings. The back, shoulders and upper surfaces of the wings are suffused with red. They have white colouring on the under surfaces of the wings, a white to cream belly, thighs and under-tail coverts. The tail is mainly red above, with darker centres to the feathers, and brown below, with red trim. The irises vary from red to brownish, and they have brownish legs and feet. Adult females are similar in appearance to adult males, but differ by having a brownish-grey breast, brown flanks with white spotting, and brown thighs and uppertail coverts. They have paler, greyish-brown colouring on the crown and back of the head, the rear and sides of the neck, back and shoulders, and the upper surfaces of the wings. The red suffusion on the back, shoulders and upper surfaces of the wings is paler than in adult males. Juvenile birds can be distinguished from the adults. The most obvious differences are the predominantly brown plumage (including brown plumage on the face), the duller and less extensive suffusion of red, the dark brown or greyish-black bill, and the absence of the white spots on the flanks.
Crimson Finch (white-bellied) |
Neochmia phaeton evangelinae
Status: Endangered on the EPBC Act list
Government evidence of impact of climate change:
Australian Government, Conservation Advice, Neochmia phaeton evangelinae
Threats The primary threats to the crimson finch (white bellied) are altered fire regimes; habitat modification by weeds; and habitat degradation by feral pigs (Sus scrofa) and grazing cattle (Bos taurus) (Dorricott Garnett 2007).
Threat Threat type Evidence base factor and status Fire Altered known Altered timing of fires; and increased frequency of high intensity timing and present fire events; is threatening the crimson finch (white bellied) increased through habitat modification and disturbance.
Fire events that frequency occur late in the dry season; particularly in canegrass type of high habitat; pose a threat to the crimson finch (white bellied) as the intensity fire vegetative cover required by the subspecies is destroyed (M events Todd pers. comm. 1999; as cited in Dorricott Garnett 2007).
Grader grass increases fuel loads and alters fire regimes.
In particular; grader grass increases the intensity of fire events (DOEE 2017d).
The key threats to the crimson finch (white bellied); including inappropriate fire regimes; overgrazing by cattle; feral pig habitat damage and weed infestation are all still present; and are likely to continue to negatively impact preferred habitat of the subspecies into the future.