Primary School Science Conservation 2020 Award

Date posted: 18-Dec-2020

Dylan Lewis Y7 from Mahurangi College, Warkworth, being presented with the ..

Supporters of Tiritiri Inc and Fullers 360 Science Conservation 2020 Award

Date posted: 18-Dec-2020

The NIWA Auckland City Science and Technology Fair winner of the Supporters of Tiritiri ..

2020 Conservation Week

Date posted: 12-Aug-2020

Meet the Takahē on Tiritiri Matangi Island When: 1:30 pm, ..

AGM 2020

Date posted: 25-Jul-2020

PLEASE NOTE CHANGE OF DATE TO WEDNESDAY 21ST OCTOBER 2020 due to Covid restrictions at t..

Ferry Resuming July 4th!

Date posted: 01-Jun-2020

Great News!!! We have confirmation Fuller360 ferry service to Tiritiri Matangi wi..

The 2020 Photo Competition Winners

Date posted: 22-May-2020

Here are the winning and commended photos from this year's competition. Congratulations to the photo..

Celebrate the Takahe Art Competition

Date posted: 08-Apr-2020

Hi Tiri Kids, It’s TakahÄ“ Awareness Month! Everyone loves our takah..

COVID-19 Important Information

Date posted: 25-Mar-2020

The government has announced that New Zealand is now at alert level 2 for COVID-19. Th..

2019 Winner Primary School Supporters of Tiritiri and Fullers 360 Science Award is Ethan Raymond

Date posted: 11-Mar-2020

Ethan has helped the Enviro-Warriors in many ways such as planning, gard..

2019 Winner Y8-Y13 NIWA Supporters of Tiritiri and Fullers 360 Science Award is Abby Haezelwood

Date posted: 11-Mar-2020

Abby Haezelwood with her winning Science Exhibit on Plastic Beaches at the NIWA Taihoro Nuk..


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.