Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

Project FeederWatch Week 13

Lesser Goldfinch

Lesser Goldfinch

For Week 13 of Project FeederWatch, the Lesser Goldfinches decided to come around, which was especially exciting because they were a life bird for me, and my 10th for 2009. Goldfinches (Lesser and American) are both new to me and so I spent most of my feeder watching time this weekend watching them.

One of the best things about the Lesser Goldfinch is that they are permanent residents around here and so hopefully, they’ll keep coming to the feeder even after the Americans leave in the spring.

Lesser Goldfinch

Lesser Goldfinch

The nyjer bag seems to be the big draw (thanks again to my sister and her family for giving it to me for Christmas) and so I hung the fancy nyjer feeder, which hasn’t drawn a single goldfinch in the 2 years I’ve had it, above the bag. The bag is still favored, but some of the American Goldfinches finally discovered it, and not a moment too soon as the nyjer bag was getting a bit crowded.

At one time I saw 4 American Goldfinches and 2 Lesser chowing down on the nyjer seed. A few House Finches even came by, but they were more interested in the nearby hummingbird feeder, which I put back out this weekend on the off chance of seeing an early hummer.

American and Lesser Goldfinch

American and Lesser Goldfinch

The goldfinches are especially fun to watch because of their acrobatic nature: they seem as happy eating upside down as rightside up. The feeders are close to the window too, which makes photography sort of easy, but upon seeing these shots, I’m thinking I ought to clean the windows.

Other than the goldfinches, all of the usual suspects made appearances, the doves finally showing up just before dark on Sunday evening. At 16 species, this was my best count period for variety, though I’ve had higher numbers of individuals.

Two observations: Blue Jays only seem to come on Sundays. It is the only day of the week I’ve seen them the past few weeks. Doves are much scarcer than I thought they’d be. I knew the white-wing numbers decrease in the winter, but I never realized by how much.

And, now, the count…

  • White-winged Dove (1)
  • Mourning Dove (2)
  • Blue Jay (2)
  • Carolina Chickadee (1)
  • Black-crested Titmouse (2)
  • Carolina Wren (2)
  • Bewick’s Wren (1)
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet (1)
  • Northern Mockingbird (1)
  • Orange-crowned Warbler (1)
  • Chipping Sparrow (11)
  • Northern Cardinal (2)
  • House Finch (2)
  • Lesser Goldfinch (2)
  • American Goldfinch (4)
  • House Sparrow (4)

Be sure to check out I and the Bird #93: The Compelling Nature of Birds at Vickie Henderson Art.

Lesser Goldfinch has left the blog post

Lesser Goldfinch has left the blog post

1 Comment

  1. Congrats on your 10th life bird for the year. And it’s only February! That’s interesting that the finches seem to prefer the nyjer sock/bag over a “tube” nyjer feeder. Almost makes you think that birds can be finicky! The finch in that last photo almost looks like a bumble bee in flight.

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