Long Tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus)

Siskin (Carduelis spinus)

Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis)

January 23, 2021

Goldfinch video by Maurice Baker.

Scientific name: Carduelis carduelis

Family: Finches and Buntings

Wingspan: 21 - 25cm (4 1/2")

Diet: Mainly seeds and insects

Feed with: Niger seed

Habitat: Goldfinches are most commonly seen in the southern parts of England. Their favorite places to be include bushes and trees, seeding plants and thistle-laden ground. During particularly bad spells of weather, it is not unknown for goldfinches to migrate further south.

Lifespan: 6 Years

Goldfinch Characteristics

The stunning goldfinch is one of the most abundant and colourful finches on the British isles. With a bright red face that contrasts beautifully with a black and white head and yellow wing bars, the goldfinch also features subtle a brown mantle and and flanks with a white-ish underpart.

Both male and female goldfinches are similar, except that the male red colouration stands slightly behind its eyes.

Goldfinch Breeding & Nesting

Goldfinch nests are built exclusively by the female and comprise mainly of moss, lichen and grass. The interior of the nest is lined with materials such as plant down and wool. The nest is like a cup-shaped bowl. It is common to find goldfinch nests in large garden, on the end of branches and buried within hedgerows.

Gold finch eggs are pale blue, glossy and smooth and are about 18mm in length. Breeding starts in late April, the incubation period lasts for between 10 - 14 days and then around 15 fledge days. Both parents work together to feed the young.

Goldfinch Feeding

Owing to the thin and light-weight bill of the goldfinch, the primary diet is of seed, which can be from many different varieties of tree, including birch and alder

Ideal wild bird food for goldfinches include niger seed and sunflower hearts. They will feed from both hanging feeders and bird tables.

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