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Marc Simmel

Cupertino, California, United States


Three American Goldfinches were observed during this past weekend (2/1/2014) with some deformities of the cartilage in the beaks and claws. Should I be concerned that it is a disease that may spread to other birds?


Deformed bill

Deformed Claws And Beaks On American Goldfinches

One of three American Goldfinches with cartilage deformities that have been seen at my feeders on 2/1/2014 1nd 2/2/2014. This one with a deformed beak and claws.

6 replies on “Deformed claws and beaks on American Goldfinches”

Mags King says:

Wow, 5 years later but I have a lone goldfinch at my window feeder. She comes alone,not a flock. Her beak is dark but has a whitish matter, a deformity?, on either side. She sits in the seeds, not perched so claws aren’t visible. She takes a long time to eat. I talk low, she stops and listens. I want so to help her but I guess I’m doing that already.
I live on the Gulf, near the BP Disaster, and we’ve seen marine, bird and land mammals with deformities. (Most believed to arise from certain chems in the dispersant Corexit that was, in part, in illegal aerial of 2 million gallons night spraying

J Abbot says:

I had a sick goldfinch with a mal-formed beak at my feeder January 2019 in Albany, NY area. Poor thing couldn’t eat.

I have a goldfinch with some sort of peeling on its beak that I almost stepped on in my yard under my feeders. It’s weak and seems unable to eat. I brought it in to see if I could help it but am not too hopeful. I’m in Hampton NH. I wish I could find out what causes the problem?

Holly Faulkner, Project Assistant says:

Hi Marielle, Please call your local wildlife rehabilitator – they have the necessary federal permits to handle and treat wild birds. If you’re not sure who that might be, contact your state wildlife officials. Our Sick Birds and Bird Diseases webpage has more information on diseases and how best to clean your feeders.

Feb 5 2024: A gold finish came to my winow feeder. The beck seems deformed (as if whiskers are coming off the beck) and it is very sluggish. It ate a little but is now just sitting in the feeder. It is eating again bu my guess is that it won’t last the night. At least it is safe from cats right now.

I should have said finch.

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