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The chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs), is a common and widespread small passerine. This bird takes its name from the chaff – husks of corn – that was used in the nosebags of working horses. The chaffinches fed on the spilt chaff. A cheerful garden visitor, they are one of the longest-lived of British passerines, hence the relatively low reproduction rate – it has been known to live for a remarkable 14 years. Oaks are their favourite trees. It is the UK's second commonest breeding bird. Though the cock's song is a short and simple repetition of notes ending in a flourish, the Victorians greatly valued its ability as a songster, and huge numbers were trapped annually for the cage bird trade.
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