Jul 17 2011
Smaller than the American goldfinch, this one is called the lesser goldfinch.
Lesser goldfinches look slightly different from the Salad Birds I wrote about on Friday. The males have black backs in Texas, green backs in the rest of their range.
Their food preferences are slightly different too. In addition to seeds, lesser goldfinches eat buds, flowers and fruits.
Flowers? Yes, they’ll eat the flowers of chaparral honeysuckle and three species of oaks. They’ve even been known to visit hummingbird feeders, though not as a steady diet.
So I guess the lesser goldfinch can’t earn the nickname “Salad Bird.” Perhaps he’s a “Flower Child.”
(photo by Julie L. Brown. Click on the photo to see the original.)