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House Finch or Purple Finch?

Posted: Jun 04 6:04 pm
by DennisM39
Seen at my feeder today, Victoria BC
I am leaning towards a House Finch. If not why not?

ImageHouse or Purple Finch by Dennis McMillan, on Flickr

Re: House Finch or Purple Finch?

Posted: Jun 05 6:56 am
by BirdingBC
Hi Dennis,

This bird is a House Finch.

The field marks I noted are:
  • Redness concentrated on head and breast
  • Heavy brown strikes under wing
The purple finch we have around here are a more raspberry red (red mixed with a bit of pink) and the colouring does cover much of the bird. House Finch are more red with a bit of orange mixed in. House finch can be orange or even yellow depending on diet.
Now there are juveniles and females purple finch that don't have the raspberry colouring. When not singing or calling, I normally ID these by a dark brown eyestrip behind the eye. Purple finch also look stocky compared with House finch, and purple finch have a different head shape.

Here is a reference for you: ... them-apart