Linnet, the bird that hovers above linseed. Page from the Complete Book of British Birds
Linnets.  Page from the Complete Book of British Birds

Linnet: the linseed bird

The English name “linnet” derives from French meaning “the bird that hovers above linseed” (or flax the crop which produces linen and linseed). The linnet is a bird of the countryside and agricultural fields. They are mainly brown in colour, the males have  distinctive red markings on the head and breast.  The linet’s scientific name Carduelis cannabina comes from its fondness of another oilseed, hemp.