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yes, yes,  I know it is an awful pic.  Had problems getting WIFI working on my camera yesterday so it is a photo of a photo.   If not good enough I can try to get technology to work again.   At my feeder yesterday (actually there were 3 of them) mixed in with the finches.   I live in mountains of western NC - at about 3k feet in elevation.

Any ideas?

 

 

IMG_0717.jpg

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maybe.  But has some significant differences from my other goldfinches (of which I have a horde).  

- the back is orang'ish, not olive, the wing bars are orange'ish, it is a little larger,  has only a yellow chin/breast not the belly (the belly is white), and the wings are jet black. 

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I checked a field guide again for all variations - the one labeled “juvenile” seems spot on.   

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This is an American Goldfinch, no doubt. When making IDs by looking at a picture or drawing in a field guide, it's important to remember that all individuals might not look exactly like the depiction in the guide.

There's a lot of individual variation in birds and many other reasons why all birds of various ages/sexes might not look exactly alike.

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National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America.  6th edition.  Page 523.

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