Why do finches turn yellow in the spring?
An American Goldfinch male displays his handsome breeding plumage on a cherry tree limb in Tennessee, USA. Goldfinches turn bright yellow as the days of spring grow longer. Goldfinches turn bright yellow as the days of spring grow longer.
Why do yellow finches change color in the winter?
The male goldfinches molt into their brilliant spring outfits. New, colorful feathers push out the worn, dull winter plumes. Again, the traditional answer is they become duller in the winter so they can better hide from predators.
How do finches turn yellow?
But right now is when they do a partial molt, replacing all their feathers except for those on the wing and tail. The feathers that grow in are the bright yellow breeding plumage. In September the goldfinches molt again, this time replacing all their feathers, but now they turn to a relatively drab olive color.
Goldfinches can be seen all year round. Some leave to winter in France, Spain and Belgium.
After all, Nyjer seed makes up by far most of a goldfinch's diet; why would they suddenly disappear? They've got young birds to take care of, and young birds need something meatier to eat than Nyjer seed. Most birds will feed their young birds insects at this point, but goldfinches tend to stick with seed.
Lifespan. Lifespan in the wild averages 3 - 6 years. Maximum Recorded - 11 years.
In the spring, as they grow new body feathers the males especially transform into bright yellow breeding plumage, but the wing and tail feathers remain from the previous fall. Pale edges on the wing feathers continue to wear and fade, and bill color begins to change to pale orange.