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Evening Grosbeak

The Evening Grosbeak (Coccothraustes vespertinus) is a large finch that, in the past, was treated in a genus of its own as Hesperiphona vespertina. It is now usually treated in the same genus as the European & Asian Hawfinch.

Their breeding habitat is coniferous and mixed forest across Canada and the western mountain area in the United States and Mexico where they nest in horizontal branches or in the forks of trees.

The migration of this bird is variable; in some winters, they may wander as far south as the southern U.S.

Adults have a short black tail, black wings and a large pale bill. Adult males have a bright yellow forehead and body; their head is brown and they have a large white patch in the wing. Adult females are mainly olive-brown, greyer on the underparts and have white patches in their wings.

These birds forage mainly in trees and bushes, but sometimes will look for food on the ground. They mainly eat seeds, berries and insects. Outside of the nesting season, they often feed in flocks. Sometimes, this bird will swallow fine gravel for the salts.

The range of this bird has expanded far to the east in historical times, possibly due to plantings of Manitoba maples and other maples and shrubs around farms and the availability of bird feeders in winter.

Evening Grosbeak


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