The streaky-headed seedeater or streaky-headed canary is 13?14 cm in length. The adult has brown upperparts with some faint streaking and a plain brown rump. The head has a finely white-streaked crown, dark face, and white supercilium and chin. The underparts are warm buff. The sexes are similar, but some females show a little breast streaking. The juvenile has less head streaking, a dull supercilium, more heavily streaked upperparts, and heavy streaking on the pale grey underparts.. The streaky-headed seedeater is usually seen in pairs, but can be gregarious, forming large flocks, alone or with other canary species. This is an unobtrusive finch, often perching inside bushes.

Habitat and Distribution

Its habitat is open woodland and scrub, including savanna, orchards, and gardens. It builds a compact cup nest in a scrub. It is a common resident breeder in suitable habitat in much of Africa south of the Sahara.


It feeds on soft fruit, weed seeds and buds, and sometimes takes insects. Large flocks can damage sunflower, millet and other cereal crops.

Calls and Songs

Its call is a soft tseee, and the song is a wit-chee-chee-chee-cha cha cha cha chip, interspersed with mimicry of other species. There is also a tweu tweu tirrirrit-tink given in display flight.