I set my sights on getting goldfinches to visit my backyard, so I got thistle seeds, which is like candy for them ….
I got a finch feeder, which has smaller holes so that the seeds don’t fall out.
However, sparrows also find thistle very attractive. They descended on the feeder and would not allow the finches close to the feeder.
I was now begining to understand why the local bird enthusiasts did not like sparrows. Not only did they seem to consume any and all seed/food left for native birds, but would also agressively keep them from feeding.
So, I researched feeders some more and found that the most effective feeder for goldfinches is one in which the feeding hole is BENEATH the perch. Sparrows claw grip does not allow for them to swing upside down to feed, so this design deters sparrows, while allowing the finches to feast. The native black capped chickadees and titmice did not seem to have an issue feeding either.
So, up went the new feeder, away went the sparrows and the wait for the goldfinches began …
3 days later, I began to see some of the gold coloured birds fly by, investigating the feeder!
Then, we began to have regular visits from them. Even so and until now, years later, I still am not used to seeing the flashes of gold go by .. the beauty makes me stand still and stare …
As we move into spring, the feathers on the male molt and he gets more and more golden, until he reaches this crazy, amazing, beautiful gold colour for the summer!
The female is very drab comparitively and is a dull olive at her most attractive best ..