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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Forest and Rangeland Birds of the United States

Natural History and Habitat Use

Hoary Redpoll -- Carduelis hornemanni

RANGE: Breeds in western and northern Alaska, northern Yukon, northern and east-central Mackenzie, southern Victoria Island, Keewatin, northeastern Manitoba, Southhampton Island, and northern Quebec. Also on Ellesmere, Bylot, and northern Baffin Islands, and in northern Greenland. Winters in the breeding range (except extreme northern areas) and south, irregularly, to southern Canada, and Montana to northern Illinois, New York, and New England.

HABITAT: Breeds in shrubby areas, including sparse, low vegetation in open tundra. In winter, inhabits open areas, fields, and open woodlands.

NEST: Builds nest with dry grass, rootlets, and willow down or feathers; places it in low shrubs such as willow or dwarf birch and often over water.

FOOD: Mostly eats plant materials, especially seeds, but some insects and larvae in summer. Forages on the ground, and gleans food from branches and leaves of shrubs.

REFERENCES: Bent 1968.

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