Let’s face it…who doesn’t love goldfinches in their back yards! Their sweet vocalizations and little fights with each other are reason enough to love them. When you throw in the male’s summer plumage, it’s impossible not to want to see more of them.
Over the years, I’ve tried different things to attract them. Some have worked and some not. Surprisingly, one of the most successful means I found by accident. Let me outline them for you.
Keep It Clean
Of all of the birds I feed, goldfinches have got to be the fussiest. If you have a feeder in your back yard they’ve been bombarding and suddenly, almost none of them are bothering it, chances are it’s gotten dirty. You may not be able to see it from your window or just passing by but it’s dirty or has gotten wet inside. And not just the feeder itself. If you have any kind of clear rain shield on top of it, clean that too. Unless it’s been dirty for a LONG time, you’ll see them return to it the day you clean it. If it has been dirty for a while just be patient. They will return to it.
Turn Their Lives Upside Down
Goldfinches are very social birds with their own species but appreciate having their feeders to themselves. This means if you can get them one of those upside-down thistle feeders, they’ll love you because house finches can’t use those. It’s also a good idea to locate the feeder away from your main feeder station.
Be patient. It usually takes a little while before one or two brave souls try it. Once they have, others will learn from them. The next thing you know, you’ll look out in your back yard this feeder will look like your hanging goldfinch ornaments from it-LOL!
Treat Them Like Chickadees
This is the surprise I told you about. Many years ago, I bought one of those chickadee feeders that have the larger bird restricting ring around it. Little by little, I started seeing goldfinches coming to it. I put sunflower chips in mine. After a little while, it became so busy I had to set up another to alleviate the traffic. Trust me on this: chickadees, titmice, wrens and goldfinches love this. House finches will learn to use it over time but not immediately. One of the things I do to help this is take it down after morning feeding and put it up again after dinner but before dark. They WILL learn and adapt to this schedule, I promise you.
So, there you have it. My top three tips for attracting more goldfinches. Do you have any tips or tricks you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them! Leave me a comment below and tell us about them. Thanks again for reading and enjoy your back yard!
Note from Jeff
I apologize for not posting as frequently as I should be and I promise to fix that. I’ve had a few family health/passing issues that are now behind me. I hope you’ll come back and join in again. If not, I understand and still wish you the best! JJ