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Where are the Goldfinches?

floraliesfloralies Haute-Garonne SW FrancePosts: 2,172
Do you have any Goldfinches up there in the UK? By now we usually have flocks of them on the feeders but so far I haven't seen any at all anywhere. Even in late summer we usually see a small flock here but didn't see them. They are then joined by migrating birds for the winter. Climate change perhaps?


  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,621
    They are all on my feeders at the moment. We have them all year and enjoy watching their antics, they can be fractious little sods but mainly with each other rather than harassing other species.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 SomersetPosts: 10,547
    No, you haven't got them all @Steephill, there are lots on our feeders here. In fact there were too many to count yesterday - about 20 or 30 perhaps - a stunning sight. We don't usually get that many.
  • Singing GardenerSinging Gardener EssexPosts: 1,214
    I have large numbers of them here this year as well.
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 11,391
    They seem resident all year round here and numbers are increasing judging by how many youngsters I see over the course of a year, with at least a couple of broods (possibly 3) I would estimate.  They pretty much 'own' the sunflower heart feeder but can take over all 3 (that's 12 feeder perches) as the flocks increase in numbers, with some having to wait their turn (which they don't do for long before deciding it's their turn anyway and then being quite aggressive with each other.)
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • RubytooRubytoo On the sofa, Southerly aspect.Posts: 1,287
    We have a few coming in again now.
    In recent years we have had lots all through the year.
    But not so many this. I think there will be some migrant ones soon.

    We are keeping an eye out as in recent years Greenfinches and Chaffinches have succumbed to ( I think) trichomoniasis or another virulent disease.
    Noted chaffinches with the poorly foot disease also.
    I read the other day but cannot remember where that this is has also hit Goldfinches  now.
    Possibly BTO. Though reading it now can't see the mention of Golds. So maybe elsewhere if not on link. It figures as they are also finches.

    Sorry writing cards got reminded we need to send them soon....
  • floraliesfloralies Haute-Garonne SW FrancePosts: 2,172
    That is very interesting everyone, sunflower hearts are hard to come by here, I have to order them on line and usually have plenty of finches. I wonder if the warmer climate and increase in sunflower hearts in other countries means that they stay and overwinter elsewhere.
  • AstroAstro Posts: 383
    I do get Goldfinches at the feeders but they aren't there at the moment, they usually arrive later in the winter. Perhaps there's still plenty of food in the wild at present?
  • floraliesfloralies Haute-Garonne SW FrancePosts: 2,172
    You may be be right @Astro, there are no Chaffinches or Greenfinches either which is also unusual. I hope they haven't all fallen away with Trichomonosis.
  • cornellycornelly Posts: 968
    We have them in South Wales most of the year, eating sunflower hearts, they love them.
  • RubytooRubytoo On the sofa, Southerly aspect.Posts: 1,287
    I think it is really hard to tell.
    Some people in some areas get residents that stay pretty much all year. But will go elsewhere for a few months like into wood land. Then come back to gardens in leaner months or when temps drop.
    Some get a mix and winter migrants.

    I do not know the right answers but do think it is a bit hit and miss and a mix.

    We lost our migrant  and / or resident starlings for a good few years. Now they are well and truly back with a vengeance this year .
    Never been so happy to have our car umm... "creped" all over daily. Neighbours less happy.
    Sorry a bit off topic. Starling, such wonderful colourful birds.

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