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.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Look for peeks of yellow as American Goldfinches molt

As spring approaches the goldfinches are preparing to lose their dull feathers and grow their bright yellow feathers. American Goldfinches are the only finches in North America to go through a complete molt two times a year.

In the spring the duller olive green wardrobe of the male is switched over to the bright yellow feathers with a stylish black cap and black and white wings. The spring molt requires a large amount of nutrients and energy which probably explains their ravenous behavior at the feeders right now. Are your feeders clean and full of fresh seed?

At the feeders they will be looking for food full high fat like Sunflower or Nyjer thistle. Habitat is also important. In this case you do less work, not more. They love to eat dandelion and grass seeds and don't cut off the tops of your Marigold, Zinnias, Cosmos, or Coneflowers... Goldfinches love them! A row of sunflowers along the fence can attract finches as well as a variety of other birds too.
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And if you don’t have a natural water source nearby, set up a bird bath. Place it among shrubs and low-branched trees so goldfinches can keep watch for predators while descending gradually toward the water. Wild birds can obtain some water from their food, but goldfinches are vegetarians and like to sip from shallow baths where available to wet their whistle.

Related Articles:
European Goldfinches http://bit.ly/Q2Cu37
Goldfinch Migration http://bit.ly/MzGSPD
Are Goldfinches here in the winter? http://bit.ly/PZu5ML
Goldfinches: The Last Birds Nesting http://bit.ly/PZuejj
Bird of the week: American Goldfinch http://bit.ly/PZum2a

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