Attract Yellow Goldfinches to your Garden

July 29th, 2007

The American GoldfinchThe American Goldfinch, Carduelis tristis, is a beautiful backyard songbird that happens to frequent our garden so I thought I’d share how I attract them with others.

The easiest way to attract these birds is with a sock full of niger thistle seeds. You can get these at most home improvement stores, but I’ve seen them for really cheap at Walmart. These mesh socks nicely contain the seed and allows the finches to eat at varying angles (such as upside down) that they’re oft to do at times.

There are also more expensive finch feeders, large plastic contraptions with multiple eating locations. These, I do not recommend. The socks accomplish the same thing, in a better way, for less money. We had one of these finch feeders before, and the birds would never use it, whereas they use the socks every day. So, apparently 9 in 10 goldfinches agree, simple socks are more useable.

These yellow birds love the seeds of thistles, dandelions, goldenrod, sunflowers (especially maximillian sunflowers, they’ve literally attacked mine for the seed), and coneflowers. They do not use cavities (houses) for nesting, prefering to nest in shrubs and trees, so a wooded lot of some sort is a good idea. And of course when trying to attract any sort of wildlife, water is a good idea as well. So a nice birdbath or fountain is recommended.

The American Gold Finch is a somewhat shy bird, they prefer to eat away from other species, so place don’t place your sock right next to any other type of birdfeeder.

8 Responses to “Attract Yellow Goldfinches to your Garden”

  1. Dave  Says:

    I disagree. The plastic contraptions, better known as tube feeders are more attractive in the yard than that jock strap hanging from the branch. That nut sack will attract goldfinches and West Hollywood Twinks to your yard!

  2. m  Says:

    Thanks, this was very helpful. I rather like the resourcefulness. I don’t know where Dave puts his socks, but clearly he made a connection between socks and jock straps that wasn’t in the article.

  3. Alan  Says:

    I have to agree! I like tube feeders, i think they are more attractive. I enjoyed the article.


  4. Schwag  Says:

    Gardening SUCKS! I hate vegetables.

  5. Amy K  Says:

    My finches won’t use the plastic feeders – only sock feeders. I’m from Oklahoma and live next to a pond.

  6. Dan T  Says:

    I’ve used the plastic feeder tubes for several years and have not had any problems attracting golden as well other types of finches native to our eastern Iowa area.
    Also like the tubes to perserve the seed against weathering.

  7. charles bevelhymer  Says:

    These birds will not use the fancy plastic type feeders in my yard. They love the sock niger seeds and my squirrel proof feeder providing oil sunflower seeds.

  8. Charles Myrick  Says:

    What kind of plants or bushes do I need to plant to best attract the yellow finches? I live in NW Georgia, Dade County to be exact. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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