Return of the Goldfinches

Posted on March 3rd, 2009 by

Yesterday saw an increase in birdfeeding activity at the Interpretive Center. The warmer temperatures, south winds, and increasing daylength have been noticed by our avian friends. Amidst the feeding frenzy this little guy appeared at the feeder outside my office (photo taken through screened window):


This is the first American Goldfinch I have seen in the Arb since mid-November; while many of these birds are present year-round, the ones that summer in the Arb always seem to leave during the winter. Notice that this bird is beginning to acquire its bright yellow breeding plumage around the head and face, which allows us to identify it as a male. Shortly after this bird appeared he was joined by another goldfinch at the same feeder.

Certainly spring is not far off. Keep your eyes to the skies; the first northbound flocks of Canada Geese are only a week away!


One Comment

  1. Carol Zeh says:

    Our goldfinches have not been away at all. .they are at our thistle feeder every day. Today I saw one that was more yellow than the rest, so you are correct.. Spring is not far off in the Lake Minnetonka area. Our resident chipmunk was out yesterday as well. First time I have seen him, but he probably has been around a few days. His doorway has been under a snowbank that has now melted. We also have had lots of robins and cedar waxwings all winter. They like our crab apple trees and now we have grass for the robins to hop around on. The trumpeter swans were back on the lake inspecting their nest site, even tho the lake is still frozen. Our geese that stayed all winter have paired up and have been seen on solo flights and in pairs. Nesting in progress, we assume. A few eagle flights around, but no residency as yet on the nest near Watertown, MN.