Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Transitional Goldfinch

It's the time of year when the male American goldfinch loses his lemon-yellow breeding plumage and takes on his drab winter colors. Here are a couple of photos of a transitional goldfinch at one of our feeders this past week. Kind of a mess, isn't he?

For comparison, here is what a male goldfinch looks like during the breeding season (spring and summer):

And here is a winter goldfinch (this may be a female, as a winter male may have more yellow on his head, but they are not terribly different from each other):

I've written about goldfinches several times: see other posts here.


Dan Tallman said...

Penny—Your last photo is definitely a winter male goldfinch. The wings are clearly jet black. The female’s wings are more of a charcoal-gray. I believe this field mark is reliable throughout the year.

Penelopedia said...

Thanks for the clarification, Dan!

Ela said...

I love your birds,they are fantasic
Greetings from Poland