I grew up around here but for some reason I can’t remember seeing American Goldfinches in our back yard as a kid. As I became more interested in birds over the last few years, my visits home would only be in the very early spring or, more often, at Christmastime. (Meanwhile I got to know the local European Goldfinches in Leiden). So in my memory I’ve only seen male American Goldfinches in their winter garb. I am really wowed by the bright, beautiful yellow color they transform into for the summer and I’ve enjoyed watching them during the transformation – they can look kind of funky when they’ve got a half-drab half-bright thing going on. Last week we took a walk at Rollins Savanna, the closest Lake County Forest Preserve to our house, and saw our first totally ready American Goldfinch. What a beauty!