AGM 2019

Date posted: 09-Sep-2019

Our Annual General Meeting was held at 7:30 pm on Monday 23rd September at the F..

More plaudits for Tiritiri Matangi

Date posted: 15-Jul-2019

Recognition of the wonderful experience visitors have when visiting the Island h..

Results of the 2019 Photo Competition

Date posted: 15-Jul-2019

The results of this year's competition have now been decided. Click here (/2019-photo-co..

Lighthouse Open Day

Date posted: 30-Apr-2019

Our historic lighthouse, signal station and diaphonic foghorn will all be on dis..

We need a new Treasurer

Date posted: 08-Apr-2019

The Supporters need a new treasurer to take over in September when Kevin Vaughan..

2019 Concert

Date posted: 05-Feb-2019

OrigiNZ, the tartan taonga are returning for the 2019 concert. Click..

Tiri's three unique foghorns

Date posted: 01-Feb-2019

Our next social event will take place on Monday 18th March when Carl Hayson and ..

Young Conservation Superstars win awards!

Date posted: 27-Jan-2019

Gabriel Barbosa and teacher Kate Asher, a team leader who co..

Entries for the 2019 photo competition

Date posted: 19-Jan-2019

We are now taking entries for the 2019 photographic competition. You can enter u..

Hihi volunteer needed

Date posted: 18-Oct-2018

Would you like to volunteer with the Island's hihi team and learn from them how ..


Scientific name:

 Carduelis chloris



Conservation status

 Introduced and naturalised

Mainland status:

 Widespread and locally common


 15cm; 28g


 7.5+ years possibly


 October – March


 Seeds, fruit buds and invertebrates

Although less than 100 greenfinch were introduced from Europe between 1862 and 1868 they are now common throughout New Zealand in farmland shelterbelts, the edges of pine plantations and native bush and scrub fringes, orchards and gardens. In autumn and winter they form large flocks, often with other finches. 

This olive green finch has a pale heavy bill and prominent yellow on the sides of the tail and the edges of the wing. The males are a brighter olive green and their yellow markings on wing and tail are conspicuous. The females are a browner, dull olive green and their yellow markings are less conspicuous. The plumage of both sexes tends to get brighter with age. In the breeding season the male’s call is a repeated harsh drawn out 'dweez' (like a long tailed cuckoo call). Other common calls are a pleasant twittering 'chichichichichit-teu, teu, teu, teu' and a rising 'tsooeet'. 

Greenfinches feed mainly on seeds (maize, cereals, oilseed rape, brassicas, linseed, sunflowers, peas, hops, redroot, chickweed, storksbill, thistles and pine) supplemented with fruit buds and a few invertebrates. 

Breeding is between October and March and two clutches a year are laid. A largish, untidy nest of twigs, grasses, moss, rootlets and wool lined with finer material and wool is built in a fork towards the top of a small shrub, tree or gorse bush or in the top of a spreading branch of a large conifer or oak. A clutch of 3-6 pale blue to light grey eggs with scattered brown spots and blotches is incubated by the female for 11-15 days. She is fed on the nest by the male.  Both parents feed the young by regurgitation during the fledgling period of 13-17 days.

Greenfinches are regularly seen and heard on Tiritiri Matangi Island.

Learn more about greenfinches at New Zealand Birds Online.

Photographs, adult male (right) and juvenile male (left) by: Kay Milton ©

References: Heather, B.D.; Robertson, H.A. 2000 The Field Guide to the Birds of New Zealand. Auckland, Viking. Moon, G The Reed Field Guide to New Zealand Birds.