the summer, the familiar American Goldfinch is brilliant
yellow, with black wings, tail, and forehead. The
black wings have conspicuous white wing bars. The
male has an orange beak. Females are similar but
considerably less bright. In winter, the male's
bright plumage is replaced with dull yellow and
olive-colored feathers. The winter female resembles
the winter male. The American Goldfinch reaches
a length of between four and five inches. Goldfinches
have a characteristic "bouncing" flight
in which they ascend and dip while moving through
American Golfinch eats mostly seeds. It will occasionally
take insects. These birds are easily attracted to
bird feeders with thistle or sunflower seeds. Golfinches
usually feed in flocks.
Range: The American Goldfinch is widespread and breeds
through southern Canada and the much of the United
States. Breeding populations are only absent from
southern portions of the Gulf States and desert
regions of the southwest. Winter birds can be found
throughout the entire continental United States.
usually occur in open country, fields, prairies,
roadsides, gardens, and suburban areas.
Nesting: Unlike most bids,
the Goldfinch nests in the middle of summer rather
than in the spring. Females lay 2-7 eggs in a nest
placed in a small shrub or bush. Incubation generally
lasts 12 days. Nestlings fledge in about two weeks.
Goldfinch is very common. It is the only bird to
be respresented as state bird by three states in
different regions of America (New Jersey, Iowa,