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.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

What yellow finches like to eat

Do goldfinches just eat thistle seed? -DeWitt, MI

American Goldfinch on Coneflower. Photo courtesy of Rodney Campbell
Though goldfinches carry the reputation of being finicky eaters, you'll have no problem finding a suitable offering that will please their palate. At the feeders Goldfinches do like to eat fresh, dry Nyjer® (thistle) and sunflower seeds.

They don’t nest until late summer so there is nothing holding them down to one territory and they are always scouting for new feeding sites. If you keep your feeders clean and full of fresh seed, when they do decide to nest your yard will have the best curb appeal. Flowers also attract finches. Goldfinches will flock to any flowers that form a seed head like cosmos or black-eyed-susans or Coneflowers.

American goldfinches are granivores, eating mainly seeds. In the wild they look for grass seeds, thistle, and other low-growing herbaceous seeds. In the summer you will see them perch on flower heads eating seeds. They can make weak stemmed flowers like cosmos dance as they ride it to the ground while eating and then let it bounce back up when their done. In the winter it is good to let your garden stand. Even though the garden may look brown and dead, it is still full of natural seeds that help the birds be less reliant on feeders in backyards.

Related articles:

What is Nyger Thistle? http://t.co/Gg2AxQg

Where are my finches? http://t.co/FRqa7eo

Goldfinch colors: Why aren't all the goldfinches yellow? http://t.co/c57skHi

Is There a Way to Attract More Goldfinches to My Yard? http://t.co/RB1cqWf