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Lesser Goldfinch (Spinus psaltria)


Photo © Elizabeth Witchel

Lesser Goldfinch nest

Photo © René Corado

Lesser Goldfinch eggs

Photo © René Corado

Lesser Goldfinch

Photo © Sharon Beals, from the collection of the California Academy of Sciences

Adult male

Photo © Carlos Echeverría | Macaulay Library

Adult male

Photo © Eric Gofreed | Macaulay Library

Female/immature male

Photo © Arlene Ripley | Macaulay Library

Female/immature male

Photo © Chris S. Wood | Macaulay Library

Adult male

Photo © Juan D Astorga | Macaulay Library

Flock

Photo © Larry Langstaff | Macaulay Library

Song

© Geoffrey A. Keller | Macaulay Library

Song

© William R. Fish | Macaulay Library

Calls

© Geoffrey A. Keller | Macaulay Library

Calls

© Geoffrey A. Keller | Macaulay Library

Calls

© Benjamin Clock | Macaulay Library

When To Look

Source: Birds of North America Online

Where To Find It

Habitats

desert

open woodland

shrub

town

Substrates

Live Tree Branch

Bush or Shrub

What You'll Find

Nest Type

cup

Chick

Altricial

Clutch Size

2
6

Nest Height

45 ft
4 ft

Nesting Statistics

Incubation Period

12-13
days

Brooding Period

11-14
days

Useful Hints

  • Lesser Goldfinches are often found in suburban habitats, like parks and gardens.
  • The nest is usually in a twig fork of a tree, mostly hidden by foliage or lichens.
  • The female, which builds most of the nest without help from the male, begins by collecting plant materials with her beak. The materials can include leaves, bark, catkins, yucca fibers, cocoons and spiderwebs. Sometimes she strips branches of their fibers, holding them with her feet.