Lawrences Goldfinch (Carduelis lawrencei)

Lawrences Goldfinch

[order] PASSERIFORMES | [family] Fringillidae | [latin] Carduelis lawrencei | [UK] Lawrences Goldfinch | [FR] Chardonneret gris | [DE] Maskenzeisig | [ES] Dominiquito de Lawrence | [NL] Maskergeelvink


Monotypic species

Physical charateristics

In all plumages known by the large amount of yellow in the wings. Male has a black face (including chin).

Listen to the sound of Lawrences Goldfinch

[audio: Goldfinch.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 20 cm wingspan max.: 22 cm
size min.: 10 cm size max.: 12 cm
incubation min.: 12 days incubation max.: 13 days
fledging min.: 14 days fledging max.: 15 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 3  
      eggs max.: 6  


North America, Middle America : Southwest USA, Northwest Mexico


Oak-pine woods, chaparral.
Breeds locally in a variety of habitats including streamside trees, oak woodland, open pine woods, pinyon-juniper woods, chaparral. Often found close to water in fairly dry country. In migration and winter, occurs in weedy fields, farmland, brushy areas,


Does not seem to defend territory strongly; sometimes nests in loose colonies. In courtship, male follows female, perches near her and sings.
Nest: Site is usually about 15-20′ above the ground in a tree such as oak, cypress, sycamore, o
r pine, sometimes lower in shrubs or up to 40′ above the ground. Nest is a small open cup made of grass, flower heads, plant down, feathers, animal hair. Female builds nest; male often accompanies her and may carry some material, but rarely provides any r
eal help.
Eggs: 4-5, sometimes 3-6. Whitish to pale bluish white, usually unmarked, sometimes with reddish spots. Incubation is by female only, probably about 12-13 days. Male feeds female during incubation.
Young: Both parents bring food for the nestlings. Young leave the nest about 11-13 days after hatching.

Feeding habits

Mostly seeds, some insects.
Feeds mostly on the seeds of native weeds and other plants, such as fiddleneck, peppergrass, and chamise. Also eats plant galls, buds, and some insects. Will come to feed on salt.
Forages mostly in weeds, shrubs, and trees, often feeding quietly in a limited area, clambering about and occasionally hanging upside down to reach seeds. Sometimes feeds on the ground. Usually forages in flocks, even sometimes during nesting season.


This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Much of the breeding range of this species is under pressure from the rising human population and accompanying development. Especially given its relatively small overall population size, habitat loss from such encroachment may put the species at some risk.
Lawrences Goldfinch status Least Concern


Breeds northern California to northern Baja California. Winters southwestern United States, northwestern Mexico. Migration:
Movements are poorly understood. Disappears from many breeding areas in winter. In some winters, large numbers spread eastward across Arizona; in other years, whereabouts of most birds unknown, perhaps in Baja.

Distribution map

Lawrences Goldfinch distribution range map

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *