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Submitted By

Susan Wider

Santa Fe, NM, United States


We have been seeing this house finch-sized bird at both the bird bath and a seed feeder for about a month, often daily. The lower beak is elongated and tubular. Instead of an upper bill, there is a thin protuberance that extends forward and wraps over the side of the lower beak on the bird’s right. The bird eats and drinks well, flies well, and seems otherwise healthy. It has patches of yellow to beige above the eyes and on the breast. We have additional photos if desired.


Deformed bill


House Finch With Beak Deformity

Side view showing deformed lower beak with protuberance where upper beak should be.

13 replies on “House finch with beak deformity”

Deborah Hughes says:

We have a house finch at our feeder that has this same deformity. She seems to be doing ok despite it.

Stacy says:

I just saw one like this as well. Sad but it is able to eat. I have pics as well.

Susan Hession says:

I have one at my feeder as well. Has some difficulty eating. I sent a picture to my local rehab center

Sarah Rowan says:

I have one at my feeder, too. Just noticed her for the first time yesterday. Her upper beak seems almost non-existent.

Spike says:

I also have one. Female. Any known cause?

Holly Faulkner, Project Assistant says:

Hi Spike, please feel free to read more about beak deformities on our webpage here.

Bonnie Feary says:

Male house finch with beak deformity. Lexington SC. Dec. 28, 2020. He is at the feeder and is able to eat.

Julie says:

Angeles National Forest/LA County

Just noticed a cute little finch who has a deformed bill. She also looks as though her eyes are not in the right place and feathers either mounting on her head or she’s got a very patchy head. She’s eating perfectly and is quite a bully when the others come to eat. Have not captured photo yet but I will. Is there something I can supplement black sunflower seeds with to help with any nutritional issues?

Merilyn Herrod says:

i just had a finch at my feeder with this same beak deformity. The upper beak is large and quite hooked on my finch. I think he sturggles to eat but he must be getting some seed as he seems to be a normal size.

Forest says:

We have a male house finch with a deformed beak as well. Feb 20, 2023. Palo Alto, CA. Male, reddish top and front plumage. Looks like lower bill is very elongated and next to no top at all on his beak. End of the lower beak looks frayed, perhaps from stabbing at food on rough surfaces. Also looks like abnormal growths on top of his head on the left side. And feathers there are patchy/irregular. I have seen him several times over the least few months and think these abnormalities are progressive. He’s a moderately large, regular at the feeder and seems to eat well enough. No other signs of distress. Finally got a pretty good photo of him.

Mariel says:

We have an adult male house finch in Placitas, NM, Aug-Sept 2023, with a similar very elongate bill, over an inch long, fairly straight with slight downward curve, and narrow. We think it is at least the top bill that is overgrown.He has been around several weeks and seems to be healthy.

Debra Kempf says:

I have a male house finch with that beak at my feeder in AR. He seems healthy.

Susanne says:

Male house finch with this deformity. Eating well at feeder and seems otherwise healthy. Dallas Texas

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