A House Finch sitting on the edge of a feeder among the Autumn Blaze fall leaves.Range and habitatThese birds are mainly permanent residents throughout their range; some northern and eastern birds migrate south. Their breeding habitat is urban and suburban areas in eastern North America as well as various semi-open areas in the west from southern Canada to northern Florida and the Mexican state of Oaxaca; the population in central Chiapas may be descended from escaped cagebirds.Originally only a resident of Mexico and the southwestern United States, they were introduced to eastern North America in the 1940s. The birds were sold illegally in New York City as "Hollywood Finches", a marketing artifice. To avoid prosecution under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918, vendors and owners released the birds. They have become naturalized; in largely unforested land across the Eastern U.S., they have displaced the native Purple Finch and even the non-native House Sparrow. In 1870, or before, they were introduced into Hawaii and are known abundant on all its islands.There are estimated to be anywhere from 267 million to 1.7 billion individuals across North America.
October 22nd, 2012
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