European Goldfinch

European Goldfinch

European Goldfinch

Finches are delightful little birds.

We have a great array of finches native to Australia, from the somewhat plain through to the amazing colours of the Gouldian Finch. There are also several introduced species including the ubiquitous House Sparrow, the rarer Tree Sparrow, European Greenfinch and the European Goldfinch.

This latter species has spread throughout south eastern Australia roughly south of a line from Adelaide to Sydney. Here in my home town of Murray Bridge they are present but not in large numbers. Their distribution around here seems to be a little sporadic. One reliable spot to see Goldfinches is near the local Post Office. I had an excellent view of one sitting on a power line, its tinkling call carrying quite a distance.

Our home is nearly five kilometres from the post office and I have recorded this species on only a few occasions over the years. It has never been resident in our garden, just an irregular visitor. That could be about to change. Over recent weeks I have seen two or three on an almost daily basis. They could very well be colonising this area. There certainly is sufficient feed around for them to survive here.


5 Responses to “European Goldfinch”

  1. Brenda says:

    Would the European Goldfinch be the one our street is named after in S/E Queensland, as the species would appear not to come this far up the east coast of Australia?

  2. Trevor says:

    Welcome to my blog Brenda. You didn’t mention what part of SE Queensland you live in. The European Goldfinch was introduced to Australia in the 1800s and has expanded its range over the intervening years. While not common in your area, it is present in small numbers in the Brisbane area, so it is more than likely your street was named after this species.

  3. Trevor says:

    Brenda later sent this follow up email:

    Thanks very much. We live about an hour north of Brisbane, near Wurtulla beach – been here two months and miss the rainbow lorikeets and king parrots of our Toowoomba bird table, but wake up to an amazing array of bird song from tiny, fast moving mainly grey species! ( We know little about birds, and our “Every Australian Bird Illustrated” book doesn’t seem to have photos of our varieties)!

    Thanks for your reply, I shall certainly look at more of yours.

  4. […] European Goldfinch – another article about this species. […]

  5. Trevor says:

    The Goldfinch was introduced into Australia and New Zealand over quite a long period by a variety of people, usually members of the Acclimatization Societies who wanted Australia and New Zealand to become “like home” with species with which they were familiar.

    Various dates are given but as a guide NSW 1886, Victoria 1857, South Australia 1862 Tasmania 1827 WA 1899 but apparently not in Queensland. It become established in Qld in 1919 through expansion of its range.

    In New Zealand birds were released in Auckland 1867 Wellington 1877 Nelson 1862 Canterbury 1871 Otago 1867.

    Source: Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds (HANZAB)

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