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Evening Grosbeak - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by rb_stern
Nova Scotia, Canada, April 2008
Hesperiphona vespertina

Coccothraustes vespertinus


Photo © by tetoneon
New Jersey, USA, November 2012

18–21·5 cm (7-8½ in)

  • Short black tail
  • Black wings
  • Large pale bill


  • Bright yellow forehead and body
  • Brown head
  • Large white wing patch


  • Olive brown
  • Greyer on the underparts
  • White wing patches


Photo © by wonderview
Nova Scotia, Canada, July 2018

Western birds on average are longer-billed, have narrower yellow on forehead, and different calls.


Photo © by wonderview
Nova Scotia, Canada, 7 April 2021

Canada and the western mountainous areas of the United States and Mexico.

The migration of this bird is variable; in some winters, it may wander as far south as the southern U.S.
The range of this bird has expanded far to the east in historical times, possibly due to plantings of Manitoba maples and other maples and shrubs around farms and the availability of bird feeders in winter.


A large finch. Some authorities now place this species in Coccothraustes[1], the same genus as the Hawfinch of Eurasia.


There are 3 subspecies:

  • H. v. brooksi:
  • H. v. vespertinus:
  • East-central Canada (Alberta to New England); winters to south-eastern US
  • H. v. montanus:
  • Mountains of south-eastern Arizona to southern Mexico (Sierra Madre Occidental)


The breeding habitat is coniferous and mixed forest.



These birds forage in trees and bushes, sometimes on the ground. They mainly eat seeds, berries and insects. Outside of the nesting season, they often feed in flocks. Sometimes, they will swallow fine gravel for the salts.


The nest is built on a horizontal branch or in a fork.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. The Sibley Guide to Birds

Recommended Citation

External Links

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