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Conservation status: Green

A highly coloured finch with a bright red face and yellow wing patch. Sociable, often breeding in loose colonies, they have a delightful liquid twittering song and call. Their long fine beaks allow them to extract otherwise inaccessible seeds from thistles and teasels. Increasingly they are visiting birdtables and feeders. In winter many UK goldfinches migrate as far south as Spain.



Latin name

Carduelis carduelis


Finches (Fringillidae)

Where to see them

Anywhere there are scattered bushes and trees, rough ground with thistles and other seeding plants. Likes orchards, parks, gardens, heathland and commons. Less common in upland areas and most numerous in southern England.

When to see them

All year round.

What they eat

Seeds and insects in summer.


EuropeUK breeding*UK wintering*UK passage*
-313,000 territories100,000 birds-



In the UK
All UK apart from far N and W of Scotland


Ruud van Beusekom, Xeno-canto

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