Crossbills – birds with highly specialized diet adapted to extract seeds from the cones of coniferous trees. All types Klestov the end of the upper mandible abruptly bent down and criss-cross with the mandible, the sharp end of which, on the contrary, is bent upwards.

And in some individuals the maxilla is bent on the right side of the mandible, and the other on the left. Klest-sosnovik the largest of Klestov, its body length of 19.3 and 18.7 per see, It has the most powerful beak, whose length is 2 and the height at the base 1.4 cm, main food of this bird – seeds of pine trees that is obtained from pine cones with a solid, tight scales. To a lesser extent this crossbill eats seeds of other conifers. Insects, apparently not eating at all. Distributed in North-West Russia.

Klest-elovik , a little less sosnowica, a length of about 17.1 cm, and weighs 45 g. the Beak is of 15.94 mm in length and of 10.98 mm in height. Eats seeds of spruce and other coniferous trees – fir, larch, pine. During the period of dispersal can also eat the seeds of maples and other trees, and open galls on poplars and get out aphids.

White-winged crossbill much less elovik: body length 16.7 cm, and weight about 31 g. the Beak of this crossbill is more subtle, with a length of 18.5 mm. In many places their habitat feed predominantly on the seeds of larch, sometimes eats seeds and vareniki. Catches small invertebrates: aphids, spiders, caterpillars of moths, the larvae of sawflies.

The most common and famous of Klestov – Klest-elovik, which inhabits the forest zone from the Western borders to the East. More often it is possible to see these birds in winter in the spruce forest. Small flocks Klestov, oblepi the top of the fruit-bearing eating, tear the cones and holding their paws at the end of spruce branches, deftly pecked out the seeds. Selecting a small portion of the seeds, the bird throws a bump and flies over the other. Choosing a lump under the tree on which they fed klesty, you will see a kind of damage. Of scales split in two, some slightly bent, and yet the lump is not bristling like the one that visited the forge of a woodpecker.

Traces crossbill-elovik (they are much larger footprints of most of our

Finch birds

Crossbills don’t often go with spruce tops down, but sometimes it flies to peck the snow soaked with animal urine. Support surface feet crossbill is quite large, the length exceeds the size of the paws even larger Schur. Its length 4.4 in, width 1.6 cm Sitting in the snow, the bird keeps the legs fairly wide apart. The width of the trace track about 6 cm Moves Klest short jumps.

Perhaps, all have heard that crossbills can breed even in winter. Indeed, the nests of these birds were found at all times of the year. In Central Russia are often crossbills start nesting in March. In the years of simultaneous seed crop of pine and larch, some birds start nesting in August and September. In winter, from December to March, nests Klestov found only in areas with abundant seed crop of spruce.

Nests are usually located in dense coniferous trees, most often n-tree, rarely on pine, at a height of from 2 to 10 m from the ground. From the outside it is made of fine spruce twigs, and the inside is lined with even finer twigs, mosses and lichens. In the litter tray visible the wool of different animals and a small amount of bird feathers. Diameter of socket about 13, height 8 cm, size of the tray is 7.2×5.2 cm

The clutch is usually 3-5 eggs size 22x 16 mm. They are almost white, with only a slight bluish tint and fine and rare reddish-brown streaks. Putting aside the first egg, the female immediately is inseparable in the nest the whole period of incubation, and the male feeds her. After 15 days the Chicks appear, covered with thick grey down. The first week the female strongly in their heats, but after that times along with a male begins to fly for food. Juveniles feed by softened craw seeds of conifers.

The first days the female swallows the feces of Chicks, and in the next they throw their litter over the edge of the nest. The Chicks leave the nest at the age of 16-20 days, but the first time going back to him for the night. Juveniles-juveniles differ from adult birds have yellow-green feathers with dark shaft streaks. Left the nest Klestov young adult birds for some time continue to feed.

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