Right now, goldfinches are busier than ever at birdfeeders throughout our area. And if you're not seeing them at your feeders, you're missing out!
Just about all our customers are reporting large flocks of American Goldfinches - ten, twenty or more at a time - crowding their birdfeeders. Their sweet canary-like songs are filling the treetops. And both male and female goldfinches are looking a bit unkempt, as they are all in some stage of their spring molt. It's quite a show!!!
If your finch feeders aren't busy, as they should be, or if you want to attract even more goldfinches, here's some steps you can take to enjoy all the activity:
- Clean your feeders. Especially if you haven't given your feeders their spring cleaning yet.
A weak bleach solution (1 part bleach to 9 parts water) will help loosen grime and kill bacteria. Rinse well; air dry.
- Refill feeders with FRESH seed. If your niger seed (in the feeder OR in the bag) is more than a couple months old, it will be dried out and finches won't eat it.
Finches are molting right now and have significant energy needs. They're looking for the highest energy food they can find, and FRESH niger seed can provide lots of high energy fat and protein calories.
- Hang feeders in a location where the birds are safe from predators like cats.
- Keep the feeding area clean. Rake and bag the debris underneath your feeders to help prevent the spread of diseases like salmonellosis, which flocking finches are especially susceptible to.
- Clean and fill your birdbath. Due to their almost exclusive diet of seeds, goldfinches drink frequently and will stay close to reliable sources of water during dry periods. Keep the birdbath water clean and fresh.
- Add another finch feeder to accomodate more birds. But don't crowd the feeders; too many feeders in too small an area make it easier for disease to spread.
- Add a weather guard. A weather guard over your finch feeder will help keep seed (and birds) dry.
Don't miss out - follow the steps above for the best goldfinch show in the neighborhood!