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House Finch

Scientific name: Haemorlous mexicanus

Rosy-red on the head, throat and upper breast with brown wings, this finch was at one time known as the “Hollywood Bird”. It was illegally brought to New York in the 1940s to be sold as pets. They either escaped or were let go free to cover the crime and since then they have expanded their range and flourished. As one might imagine this is a very adaptable bird and is here year round, despite its tropical roots. Unfortunately, it has displaced the native purple finch.


a little over 1/2 ounce


6 inches

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The finch will eat insects, seeds and berries, and forage both on the ground and in trees.


This ubiquitous bird is commonly seen at feeders and is happy to live in a variety of settings.

Life Cycle

Females will choose to mate with the reddest-colored male. The color of the plumage of the male finch is determined by his diet during the molt. Occasionally you might even see a yellow male finch as a variant.

Similar Species

The purple finch is quite similar in appearance and is said to look like a house finch, dipped in raspberry. It also has a notched tail.


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