About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Fun with Finches

Go for the Gold(finches)


It's time to go for the gold in your own backyard, and you don't need years of training or special skills.

Goldfinches live throughout the United States and southern Canada, a fact that makes attracting them to your backyard a bit easier. Though goldfinches carry the reputation of being finicky eaters, you'll have no problem finding a suitable offering that will please their palate. Goldfinches love to eat fresh, dry Nyjer® (thistle) and sunflower seeds.

In July and August, after the male has serenaded the female with canary-like songs, goldfinches begin to nest for the first and only time of the year.

Here are a few items to remember when attracting finches:

Keep food fresh and dry inside the feeder. Shake the feeder periodically to make sure that the food is dry, and use a Weather Guard or Feeder Fresh to help protect your food from the elements. Make sure the food does not stay in the feeder uneaten for more than three to four weeks.

Nyjer has a lot of protein and fat that is needed for growing their feathers. Be prepared for increased activity at your feeders in the spring and fall, when goldfinches are molting.

Once they've fledged, young goldfinches still depend on their parents for food. Watch for these juveniles at your feeders as they beg for food from their parents.

Due to their almost exclusive diet of seeds, goldfinches drink frequently and will stay close to reliable sources of water during dry periods. Use a bird bath and keep the water clean and fresh.

Source: WBU Nature News http://www.wbu.com/news/naturenews/2012_08_01.html
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