More Lessers

Lesser goldfinches are summer residents along the Colorado Front Range, usually arriving in late April and departing by early October; those that summer in Colorado winter in the Desert Southwest, South Texas or Central America.

While they favor foothill canyons and shrublands, lesser goldfinches often visit our Littleton farm during the warmer months and have nested here on occasion.  However, it is in late summer that they are most numerous, usually appearing in large flocks and hanging around for several weeks.  Their breeding season has now ended and the small, vocal finches are feasting on the seeds of sunflowers, thistle and other grassland wildflowers before their fall migration.

The smallest finches in North America, lesser goldfinches are represented by several subspecies.  Males along the Front Range have black crowns and backs while those further west have black foreheads and green backs.  In all regions, it is their distinctive, high-pitched call (often delivered in flight) that usually brings them to our attention.