Nebraska Ornithologists' Union


Date of this Version



Scharf, Berigan & Kern, "Pine Siskins in Breeding Condition along the North Platte River, Keith County, Nebraska, 1993," from Nebraska Bird Review (December 1993) 61(4).


Copyright 1993, Nebraska Ornithologists' Union. Used by permission.


Johnsgard (1979) categorizes the Pine Siskin (Carduelis pinus) as an erratic breeder in a number of eastern and southeastern Nebraska counties. Ducey (1988) considers this species to be a regular nester throughout the state in suitable coniferous habitat. Neither authors have listed breeding records in Keith County, although Ducey cites a record from Chase County (Bennett 1986). The Pine Siskin is known as a breeder in 12 counties in Kansas (Thompson and Ely 1992).


We caught and banded Pine Siskins at Cedar Point Biological Station near Lake Keystone, Keith County, Nebraska (41° 13' N, 101° 38' W) during June and July, 1993. All individuals were caught in standard 36mm mesh mist nets, 12 meters long, near feeders containing niger thistle seeds. The nets were set on the hillsides of steep canyons 25-35 meters above the level of the lake among an interrupted stand of mixed eastern and western cedars (Juniperus virgiana and J. scopulorum), which were interspersed with warm-season grasses and bare rock outcrops on the Ogallala Sandstone formation.