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Uncaged Songbird

House Finches are native to the western states and Mexico. In the 1940s, illegal bird traders took to capturing and moonlighting the finches to the East Coast. There, they sold them as caged songbirds, glamorizing them by calling them “Hollywood Finches.” Under fear of prosecution under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, many owners and sellers freed the finches. Now common in all 50 states, House Finches in eastern states are descendants of their exotic fore-birds. This female House Finch was photographed in Park Hill by Mark Silverstein.


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