fine gold is the color of your breast, black are your wings

May 5, 2021

American Gold Finch

the image below is of a male American Goldfinch and a juvenile, probably male. I’d say it could be a female, but they are usually more brown/yellow. The bright yellow one seemed to be acting more like a parent than a mate. That’s what I observed anyway.

American Gold Finch 2
taken May 1, 2021
f-stop: 1/5.6; exposure time: 1/125sec; ISO 400
focal length 300mm
CANON EOS Rebel xt
edited in PhotoShop
available at Picfair
  • scientific name: Spinus tristis
  • ORDER: Passeriformes
  • FAMILY: Fringillidae
  • prefers open woodlands
  • eats seeds
  • nests in shrubs
  • Behavior: foliage gleaner
  • conservation: low concern
  • state bird of New Jersey, Iowa, and Washington
  • prefers sunflower and nyjer seeds at bird feeders ( I put thistle seed in certain feeders, not in the garden)
  • often flock with Pine Siskins and Common Redpolls
Pine Siskin | Celebrate Urban Birds
Pine Siskin
(google image)

I’m definitely going to have to do some research and find out of Pine Siskin are common to my area… actually, both birds.

Common redpoll - Wikipedia
Common Redpoll

range map: (provided by birds of the world)

image of range map for American Goldfinch
– breeding
– year-round
– non-breeding

“Their po-ta-to-chip flight call draws attention to them in open country. They’re most abundant in areas with thistle plants, and near feeders.” (

In Spanish they are called Jilguero Yanqui
In French Chardonneret jaune

Be like the bird who, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing she hath wings.


Native thistle and other composite plants are suggested plants that attract American Gold Finch, as well as native milkweed. For a while I kept a bird feeder with thistle in it, not in my gardens, as I didn’t want the thistle taking over. I stopped for a while because I started having trouble with squirrels. This spring, I started adding thistle to certain feeders again. The one that the bear got ahold of last spring, I fixed and put in one of my shade gardens, and I got a cheap, plastic feeder that I put in the middle of the back yard near the deck.

The images on the left are of the cheapie finch feeder. It easy enough to move when it comes time to mow. The images on the right are of my “shade” garden, with mostly wildflowers. I doesn’t bother me having that feeder there, as it’s easy enough to mow down when needed (springtime). I don’t necessarily want thistle growing in my other gardens, as the flower will take over and possibly crowd out other flowers.

An image of Lily of the Valley, growing at the base of the pole where
I have the damaged bird feeder hanging with thistle and regular bird seed.
Did I
mention that I taped the holes shut, so I could put feed back in it? I did…and gorilla glued it.

Images of the bear damaged bird feeder…in case you missed the earlier post. I have this screen tape that I bought so I could fix screens when they got damaged (from cats, birds flying into the screen, accidents, whatever) and it worked perfectly patching up the holes.

Anyway, I’ve been rambling…so back to the Gold Finches.

“When you feel homesick,” he said, “just look up. Because the moon is the same wherever you go.”

~ The GoldFinch


Some cool facts:

  • American Goldfinches molt twice a year. Once in late winter and then again in late summer
  • breed later in the year than most North American birds, nesting in June and July; This is when milkweed, thistle and other plants have produced their seeds that they so enjoy. They incorporate the seeds in their nests, also using them to feed their young.
  • Goldfinches are the strictest vegetarians in the bird world, only eating seeds and occasionally inadvertently ingesting an insect
  • Goldfinches move south during the winter, preferring areas that get no colder than 0 degrees F (-17.7C) in January
  • paired couples make virtually identical flight calls, possibly distinguishing various couples by these calls
  • the oldest identified Goldfinch was 10 yrs 9 mos when it was captured and rereleased during a banding operation in Maryland
European Goldfinch Facts, Temperament As Pets, Care ...
European Goldfinch (above)
American Goldfinch (below)
Goldfinch Donna Tartt

Isn’t the whole point of things – beautiful things – that they connect you to some larger beauty?


If Goldfinch has flown across your path:

It is a sure sign of exuberance, liveliness and enthusiasm in your current world. They are here to remind you to enjoy life and savor each moment for the joy that is in it. Perhaps it’s simply time to celebrate who you are, your accomplishments or just for the sheer fun of it. You are reminded that life is for living – and that each moment you waste on sending forth negative emotions such as fear, hatred and anger are moments that are forever lost. Find joy in the now.


hope you have a great day!
thanks for stopping by!!


Be open to whatever comes next

take care
stay safe
much love

2 Comments on “fine gold is the color of your breast, black are your wings

  1. Awesome!

    I’ve done a little research on some birds I’ve seen out here.

    Your title could be an awesome poem or song. 🤔

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