On 30 December Isaac Helmericks photographed a rosy-finch that may be the first North American record of an Asian Rosy-Finch (Leucosticte arctoa) on Adak Island in the western Aleutian Islands, Alaska. Good photographs of the bird can be viewed here: (combine both lines)
Asian Rosy-Finch has recently been shown by mitochondrial DNA to be closely related to the other three rosy-finches, Black, Brown-capped, and Gray-crowned. Five subspecies of Asian Rosy-Finch are recognized with some migratory, a partial migrant, and/or an altitudinal migrant, most at least moving lower in winter. Their breeding biology is poorly known with only a few nests found. They breed on barren, treeless montane plateaus, moraines at edges of snowfields and glaciers, rocky slopes, cliffs, shorelines and boulder beaches from Russian Siberia, Russian Far East, Mongolia, northeastern Kazakhstan and northeastern China where they have been found as high as 18,000 feet in northern China. In winter they move down slope and can be abundant in wintering areas in the Russian Far East and Mongolia. In winter in Japan they are found mostly on Hokkaido south to central Honshu (Handbook of the Birds of the World, Volume 15).