Question We live in Gettysburg, PA and we always had finches, particularly house finches who nested in our porch baskets. For the last three years they have simply disappeared. We have five trees, none have been taken down and two are huge, and we have feeders everywhere, especially in winter. Has something happened to the house finches in this area? We are not the only ones, everyone in town is commenting about it.
Thank you for your time!
Answer This has been happening all across the country since the mid 1990s for several reasons. Disease - especially West Nile Virus, Avian Pox, and conjunctivitis have taken a major toll. Second, global warming has caused the birds to move to cooler but less suitable areas both winter and summer. And as the climate warms, the disease organisms and their vectors (like mosquitoes) thrive as well.
I live in CA and have noticed the same decline in House Finches that I used to be very common here - no more.
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