Fringillidae is the family where the Sinai rosefinch belongs. A pale rosefinch may be considered a subspecies. The bird is Jordan’s national bird. Its color resembles the red sandstone of Petra. Wadi Faynan, which is a barren section of the Jordanian desert, is home to a large population of this species. About 14-14.5cm is the length of the Sinai Rosefinch.
Adult male birds in the rocky desert habitat must rank as some of the brightest birds in the world. It is similar in size and shape to Common Rosefinch, but has a longer tail; their habitat differences make it unlikely they will be confused. Its mantle, wings, and tail are sandy-brown, making it unmistakable. With silvery pink ear-coverts and a crown, it has a beautiful appearance.
Females are sandy-brown overall with sandy-buff underparts, and have only very faint streaks on their mantle and breasts, perhaps most noticeable in their beady black eyes. Only Trumpeter Finch females may be confused with this species, which has a shorter tail and a paler bill (bright red in spring/summer).
There is no streaking on the mantle and breast of female Sinai Rosefinch unless very close views are obtained; the tail has a less cleft shape and indistinct pale terminal spots. The supercilium is paler and the tail is less cleft shaped. Arid climates often attract large flocks of this sociable finch at springs and water holes.
Fresh juveniles resemble adult females, but have paler, more visible wing bars, and are warmer in tone. Females gain rose-red coloration in the autumn of the second calendar year, while males do not gain it until the first calendar year is over.
An alarm call, a high-pitched ‘touit’ of cheer, and a weak, sharp ‘stip’ of bunting-like quality are all features of Sinai rosefinch calls. Although the song is poorly documented, it has been described as melodious and varied. A quick series of between six and seven metallic “Tzi-tzi-tzi-tzi-tzi” notes constitute its rarely-heard song. In-flight Sinai Rosefinch makes a metallic sound called “Tziup.” They are common but localized.
Arid deserts, mountain gorges, wadis, crags, ravines, and wadis in the desert are its natural habitats. This species descends into the lower foothills in winter. Within the borders of Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, it can be found in the Sinai Peninsula and the Negev region of the Middle East. According to the population trend criterion, the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable.