Missed the Lesser Goldfinch…..

Lesser Goldfinch - range from eBird.org

This morning several of us from State College ran down to Greencastle, PA in search of the Lesser Goldfinch (Spinus psaltria) that Dale Gearhart reported yesterday. There are no previous records of Lesser Goldfinch in Pennsylvania, and sightings anywhere east of the Mississippi are sparse.

Dale had the feeders filled and they were pretty busy during our entire stay. Both White-crowned and White-throated Sparrows were abundant and Chipping Sparrows were back in force. The Lesser Goldfinch did not show however, during the roughly 4 hours we were present. There were very few American Goldfinches in general, a total of 4 compared to Dale’s estimate of 20 last night, so our thought was that the Lesser Goldfinch moved out with the American Goldfinches late yesterday evening.

Not more than 30 minutes after we got back to State College, Alex received a phone call that the Lesser Goldfinch had been refound at a nearby feeder. Such is luck.

Below are a few photos Alex took of various birds in Dale’s yard.

Eurasian Collared-Dove - There has been a colony of these doves in the Greencastle area for 14 years now. We were lucky to see one fly over Dale's house this morning. (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

American Goldfinch - too bad it isn't a Lesser Goldfinch (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Mourning Dove (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Red-bellied Woodpecker (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)