Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Who's the reddest?

A cool fact I found out about the male House Finch. It gets its red pigment from the food it eats. The more pigment in the food, the redder the male. Also, the females prefers to find the reddest male to mate with. I just put some cranberries out in the feeder to help this guy out. :-0




29 comments:

Kallen305 said...

What a sweet picture. I love how his little beek is open.

Thanks for answering a question that I have had for some time which is why are some male house finches redder than the other. I would have never attributed it to diet. I may have to pick up some cranberries now so all my male finches get mates this spring. ;o)

Eve said...

You forgot the napkin Shelley!!! Ha Ha! Great House finch! Do you get Purple finches??

The Birdlady said...

What a cutie! He seems to want more cranberries!

hillgrandmom said...

That's a very interesting fact! Wonder whether birds in other families also get their pigment from diets.

Mildred said...

How interesting and a very cute picture this morning to start my day.

T and S said...

The male house finch looks more like the male Rose Finch we find in India. Its a pretty specimen and you got him really well...Thomas

Knatolee said...

Hey, I didn't know that either!! Time for ME to get out the cranberries. :)

HANNIBAL said...

Very interesting! Thanks Shelley, I too will get some cranberries! You did the birdworld a great service today!

Nice photo too!

Gardener's Garden said...

Thanks Shelley and you know where I'm going! This is a really sweet shot!

Chris said...

What a nice picture... This one was really redish... Got a lot of chance to mate, well in summer of course...
This is a really good shot and you got lucky to see this guy... I have never seen it!!!

fishing guy said...

Shelly: What a neat capture of the House finch.
I remember the first time I saw this bird and thought a Sparrow had crossed with a Cardinal.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Well Well Shelley... I guess I need to buy some Cranberries ---since we have very very few male House Finches---or at least non-read ones!!!! I've seen lots of them recently along with our Goldfinches---but wondered where the males were!!!! Guess we don't have enough RED-stuff down here!!! Wonder if they'd munch on my big RED bows on the deck?????? Hmmmmm!!!! ha

Deb said...

Adorable photo of the House Finch. I think I need to string some cranberries and hang them in the tree :-)

Stacey Huston said...

Shell, Beautiful photo. Your lighting is perfect;-) So great of you to help him out, but I don't think they will be mating for a while yet...lol.. burr..

Craig Glenn said...

Shelly,

What a great picture and lesson in birding. Thanks so much for sharing. I need to spend more time in research with all my post. Consider me properly inspired!

Craig

Leedra said...

I am sure he will thank you for helping him turn redder.

ramblingwoods said...

I had read that but didn't think of putting anything out for them. Nice photo showing great detail...

Deborah Godin said...

Great bird trivia, I really like knowing that about the house finch and pigment. I'm afraid all they'd get at my place right now is some very stale Twizzlers... I heard the same think about flamingos (flimingoes?), and now everytime I see footage of them in the background of a zoo or park in a TV show I'm watching, I think, Why wouldn't they feed them the stuff that make them colorful, since that's what they famous for!"

Daisy said...

So nice to help him out in the romance department. :D

MuseSwings said...

How nice of you to to help this little guy out with cranberries. He'll be fighting the ladies off come spring. See you on the 15th at your log cabin! Wonderful!

Tina said...

Shelly,
It will be interesting to see what your finches look like after they consume all those cranberries!! Who knew!! Great tidbit! Thanks

Shellmo said...

Kallen - I've been reading up on that Cornell website! I have to go back thru my birdy books again too.

Hi eve - I do get purple finches but i haven't seen one in a while!

Birdlady - I'm off to the fruit market!

Hillgrandmom - I need to do more birdy research! I should've studied to become an orinthologist...sigh!

Mildred - glad it made your day!

T&S - thanks so much!

Knatolee - glad I could help you out! lol!

Hannibal - I'm trying to think of other red fruit - maybe apple skins.

Gardener - thank you!

Chris - trying to give a leg up on the competition - ha,ha!

Fishingguy - took me a while to tell them apart from the purple finches

Betsy - LOL at your red bows! :0

Deb - they will like that! I did a cranberry popcorn string garland and the birdies ate it up within 2 days!

Stacy - I've got him in training for spring - LOL!

Craig - thank you - you are kind!

Leedra - and rightfully so! :0

Rambling woods - trying to come up w/ other menu items.... :)

Deborah -didn't know that about the flamingos - interesting!

Daisy - they should name their first born after me I think!

Muse- I definitely see being a ladies man in his future - lol!

Denise said...

I didn't know that about house finches. I get them downstate, but I've only seen one at the cabin. I get purple finches at the cabin. Hmmmm, I'll have to get some cranberries to see how sexy those males are in the spring...LOL

MicheleRF said...

Cool pic and facts! Entertainment and an education to boot!

Vickie said...

Cute post and interesting observation. I didn't realize how much food pigment mattered.

letspaintnature.com said...

That's cool about the red color and food..I had a super red one Sunday come by for a visit...I wonder what he's eating?
Happy Belated Birthday!!!

Jayne said...

LOL Shelley! I've wondered about the variation in color. I have even had some with almost orange coloration.... wonder what they've been into? :c)

Bird Girl said...

That's interesting, Shelley! I've read that many females choose mates by how good they look - their just like us ;-)

Natural Moments said...

It will be interesting to see if your finches become redder than the norm. They can become known as the Cranberry Finch Gang.