Greenfinches can be told apart from other finches as they are light green with bright yellow flashes on their wings and tail. The female is a duller green.

Greenfinches are very vocal birds with often quite complex calls.


14-16cm (5 ½-6 1/2in) in length


They are resident throughout most of the UK. They are summer visitors in northern Scotland.


Greenfinches have become a common sight in gardens over the past few years. This is probably due to the fact that they have managed to maintain a reasonable population level, despite changes in farming practices that have resulted in fewer seeds being available in the countryside in winter and spring. They do not have any legal protection.

Habitat preference

The greenfinch can be seen in gardens particularly in late winter and early spring when it is harder for them to find seeds in the countryside. Greenfinches are traditionally birds of the woodland edge and favour taller trees and evergreen shrubs, found in parks and gardens.

Where to find them in the garden

The greenfinch is a popular garden visitor that can often be found feeding on seeds in birdfeeders or nesting in a garden conifer.

Role in the garden

Greenfinches may also feed on aphids, beetles and bugs and are hunted by birds of prey such as the sparrowhawk.