A flock of Lesser Goldfinch birds were seen in Oak Bay this week. (File contributed/ Geoffery Newell)

A flock of Lesser Goldfinch birds were seen in Oak Bay this week. (File contributed/ Geoffery Newell)

Rare flock of birds spotted in Oak Bay

Lesser Goldfinch birds were seen munching on local greenery

Oak Bay bird watching enthusiasts came across a rare sight this week.

A flock of five Lesser Goldfinch birds were spotted munching on birch and alder catkins, said local resident Thierry Ponchet.

“This marks only the third time that this bird has been seen in Victoria and the first time ever that a flock of this species has been located on Vancouver Island,” Thierry wrote in an email. “The Lesser Goldfinch typically inhabits the warmer climes of California and Oregon, but has expanded its range northwards in recent years.”

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The bird can be easily identified by its striking yellow colour and its bold black crown and olive green back.

Bird photographer Geoffrey Newell was able to snap several shots of the birds, and hopes the flock will continue to stay in the neighbourhood until Dec. 14, when the Victoria Christmas Bird Count takes place.

Last year, the Oak Bay team tallied 86 species.

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