Back in Illinois, our first jaunt was to the north (prairie) side of nearby Dick Young/Nelson Lake Forest Preserve in Batavia, Kane County.
The sun was hot and there were shadows and much glare. The Canon 100-400mm L f/4.0-5.6 IS USM lens I borrowed from our son-in-law had trouble with the way its autofocus worked with my Canon 60D, so I am not happy with the quality of the images.
Here are some of my earlier photos of this species. The first three were taken at Jones Meadow Park, North Aurora, Kane County, Illinois.
Male American Goldfinch on Redbud, April 29, 2009:
A baby goldfinch, on the right, begs from its mother: "Got milk?" One of the few bird species to feed their young no insects, they engorge thistle seeds and nourish their young with a protein-rich "milk" that is secreted from their stomach linings (August 15, 2010).
Goldfinches and Thistles ... go together like Bells and Whistles. Common as they are on the prairie, I never tire of seeing, hearing and photographing goldfinches around and above me.
This is their peak season, as the thistle begins to go to seed, providing them both food and shelter. Other birds have nearly finished their breeding and are hiding away to molt, but the goldfinches are eating the seeds and gathering the down of the thistles for their nests.
These photos were all taken at Nelson Lake--
July 7, 2011:
Female on August 5, 2009:
Pretty as a picture (June 18, 2009):
Shared in The Bird Depot