My favorite flavor of refreshing sorbet is Meyer Lemon, but today it’s raspberry – as in Purple Finch.
I didn’t have to go very far on this overcast day to enjoy seeing a new visitor at our backyard bird feeders.
House Finches are frequent visitors at the feeders, but today a special one caught my eye.
The raspberry sorbet coloring was more vibrant on the head and breast and extended deep into the back.
Purple Finches aren’t purple, but adult males have a raspberry red head, breast and back
Once I grabbed my binoculars, I knew I finally had my first male Purple Finch of the year.
Purple Finches Face Competition
According to the Audubon Field Guide, the Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus) is climate threatened.
Purple Finches feed up in trees and on the ground in open woods.
They frequently come to bird feeders, but visit feeders less in the Northeast where competition with House Sparrows and House Finches drive them back into the woods.
Male Purple Finches take two years to reach mature plumage, and first-year males look like females
We put out a blend of seeds (Wagner’s Black Oil Sunflower Seeds and Harvest Seed and Supply’s Red Berry & Nut Wild Bird food) and suet across several feeders spaced over a large area to encourage a variety of winged visitors to stop by during fall migration.
The Purple Finch enjoys darting back and forth between the feeders.
The bird is in good company, as most of the backyard birds and squirrels are frequenting the feeders.
Squirrel-proof Your Feeder
Thwarting the squirrels have become quite comical.
Thanks to advice from Jim Fowler, the beloved host of Mutual Of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, who shared his trick to squirrel-proof his feeders with intoBirds, now we have more birds to watch and enjoy.
If you’re having problems keeping squirrels off your feeders, read about Jim Fowler’s trick for squirrel-proofing your feeder here: https://intobirds.com/wild-kingdom-star-jim-fowler-shares-custom-designed-bird-feeder/
See one of our squirrels doing sit ups on our feeder as they pilfer the black oil sunflower seeds.
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Now I’m on the lookout for a female Purple Finch and excited to see what other ‘flavors’ of feathered friends fall migration brings to our backyard.
Grab your binoculars and camera and get out and see birds!