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Jun 2, 2015

Goldfinch spotted on east coast of James Bay

Photo by April Dawn Georgekish-Gull
200 kms. north of normal range
My neice April Dawn Georgekish-Gull and her husband Tony, and their children, live in Wemindji, Quebec, about 200 kms. up the eastern side of James Bay, in Quebec.   April recently took the above picture of an American Goldfinch in her village.   The normal northerly range of American Goldfinches in the newer birding field guides is the southern tip of James Bay.   Bird guidebooks a decade or two earlier show the northern limit at about 300 kilometres further south around Cochrane, Ontario, and La Sarre, in Quebec.   One could speculate that the northern range limit of American Goldfinches has moved north by 450 to 500 kms. in the last 20-30 years.   This would certainly be consistent with reports from other sources about the increasingly northern migration of many of our songbirds.   Global warming and other environmental factors certainly seem at play here and one can't help but wonder where it will all end...and will it be a good ending?   As far as April is concerned, this is the first time anyone in Wemindji has seen a goldfinch in their village.   Great sighting, April.   Well done.
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