Goldfinch - Carduelis Carduelis

Goldfinch
(click to enlarge)
Identification
The Goldfinch is a remarkably colourful finch: red face, white cheeks, black crown, golden brown body, and a bright yellow wing bar on black wings.

Looking more closely, the back and flanks are a tawny brown. The wings are mostly black with a large striking yellow band. The belly and rump are white. The
nape and crown are black, the face is red, and ear coverts are white. The beak is a very pale grey.

The sexes are similar, except that the male's red face extends slightly behind the eye. Juveniles are generally a dull brown with black wings and pale brown wing bands, and lack the red, white, and black head.

A rambling twitter best describes the song of the Goldfinch.

Nesting
The cup-shaped nest is built by the female with moss, grass and lichen, and lined with wool and plant down. The nest is usually in a tree towards the end of a branch. Breeding starts in late April and consists of 2-3 clutches of 3-7 eggs.

Food
Goldfinches feed on various tree seeds, and on thistle and dandelion seeds. Niger seed may attract them in gardens.

Many thanks to British Garden Birds for the information on this page.