Video Clip 

Taped in Alvord, Texas in February 2001 by Angelia Giles

The Lesser Goldfinch is a rare to casual visitor to North-Central Texas.  According to The Birds of North-Central Texas, by Warren Pulich, the bird that was filmed by Angelia Giles is the first record for Wise County.  We believe that this Lesser Goldfinch is of the green-backed form.

FIELD IDENTIFICATION: There are two forms of the Lesser Goldfinch, green-backed, and black-backed.  The color varies geographically, and also intergrades in some areas.

Adult male black-backed has a yellow underside, and black on the back, top of head, and back of head.  Its wings are black with a white wing bar, white on the tertials, and a white wing patch at the base of the primaries.  Adult male green-backed also shows a yellow underside, but has a black cap, and greenish back.  Immatures of both types are greenish, and sometimes streaked.

Females have yellowish undersides, and their back and head color varies from green to olive.  They also have whitish wingbars and the white patch at the base of the primaries.

American Goldfinches (Wise County's common goldfinch species) lack the contrasting yellow underside and darker back, and also have a different wing pattern.

Field I.D. by Claire Curry

Stills shots also taken from the video clip by Angelia Giles.