A project of the SRITA Association

Rock bunting

The rock bunting (Emberiza cia) is a passerine bird in the family of buntings. It nests in Southern, Central and Eastern Europe, in Eastern and Central Asia, as well as in North Africa. Prefers pastures of hill- and mountain regions.

The body length is 16-17 cms. The male and female has grey head with three black stripes. The bluish-grey head and neck visibly separate from the brownish underparts. The feathers of the female are similar to that of the male, but her colours are more pale. The nest is built between rocks, close to the ground or on the ground. The female lays 4-5 eggs, both birds sit on the eggs. The little ones hatch agter 12-14 days, in 13-14 days they leave the nest. They feed on insects, worms, molluscs, seeds.

It is a sedentary bird in Romania, we can see them in any season. The population from the higher mountainous areas choose warmer regions of the country during winter. The global population is estimated to 7-49 million individuals, in Romania 12-14 thousand nesting pairs live. The oldest rock bunting was 8 years old at the time it was caught again.