European Goldfinch

Did you know?

A group of Goldfinches is called a 'charm'.

Calls
A liquid 'tu-leep' or 'tsi-i-it'; also twittering song.
Facts and Figures
Research Species: 
No
Minimum Size: 
12cm
Maximum Size: 
15cm
Average size: 
14cm
Average weight: 
16g
Breeding season: 
August to Februrary
Clutch Size: 
3 to 7
Incubation: 
14 days
Nestling Period: 
14 days
Conservation Status
Basic Information
Scientific Name: 
Featured bird groups: 
Atlas Number: 
996
What does it look like?
Description: 

Introduced to Australia in the nineteenth century, the European Goldfinch is one of only two 'true finches' in Australia (the other is theGreenfinch ). It has a red face, with a black crown and shoulders. The sides of the head are white. The upperparts and flanks are brown, the abdomen and rump are white. The black wings have conspicuous yellow bars and a white trailing edge in flight. The tail is black, tipped with white. Females are similar to males but have a less red face. Juveniles have a brown head and streaked body plumage.

Where does it live?
Distribution: 

The European Goldfinch is a widespread species in Europe, central Asia and northern Africa and was introduced to Australia in the 1860s. Originally restricted to urban areas, the European Goldfinch has successfully moved out into country areas of south-eastern Australia, including Tasmania.

Habitat: 

The European Goldfinch is found in settled areas, farmlands and weedy areas such as roadsides, railway lands and industrial wasteland. They are often seen in gardens and parks. Particularly associated with patches of Scotch Thistle.

Seasonal movements: 

Locally nomadic within range.

What does it do?
Feeding: 

The European Goldfinch has a finer bill than its relative, the Greenfinch, and eats smaller seeds, especially those of the introduced Scotch Thistle. They also eat insects in summer.

Breeding: 

The European Goldfinch builds a cup-shaped nest in low bushes.

Living with us

Can sometimes be a pest in orchards.

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