Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The American Goldfinch

Our goldfinches were late this year, perhaps as Gary Clark speculated in his article in the Houston Chronicle the wild food crop of tree seeds and grass seeds across North Texas kept the birds well-nourished until the recent ice storms. They are migratory birds here in our area and usually come in Januarary or a little bit earlier subject to our weather. In the winter they are in flocks and I saw about 15 to 20 birds at my feeder which is not unusual. I love these little birds and always hate to see them go up north in Spring. These birds are about 5" long and both the male and female have black wings and tail with white wing bars. In winter the male is yellowish brown with a yellow wash on his face and chin and the female is a grayish brown with a little yellow tint. They have black eyes and their beak is yellow with a tint of orange. They eat seeds, insects and berries and at birdfeeders they prefer sunflower seeds and their favorite seed, the thistle. As soon as I see them at my feeders eating the sunflower seed I put out my thistle seed feeder. Thistle seed is a very tiny black seed and you will need a specialized feeder or thistle sack for this seed. 
 I know you will really enjoy these little birds if you attract them to your yard or come by the little garden in front of my shop, Just For The Birds. Even with the people passing by when the goldfinches are hungry they are at my feeder and a cherry site to brighten your day. 
 It is wonderful that we can enjoy so many different birds at all times of the year. 

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