While photographing birds on a recent hike, I noticed a flash of red. I put my zoom on the bird, not sure if I had time to get my binoculars out. I watched and two birds flew around the trees, one stopping long enough to peer in my direction.
My immediate thought was “house finch”. The problem is that all the birding references show this bird as year around all across the United States, except the Florida peninsula. I remembered hearing that people with bird feeders north of us had House Finch as regular feeders. After many years of birding on citizen science projects I knew that in Florida depending upon the time of year and weather, a lot of birds are seen that are not supposed to be here.
I checked further, and found that birders had already recorded seeing two house finch at this park just two months ago. Several commenters believe that they are extending their range. While this is not a new bird to me, it is a new one to my list of those seen locally. As you can see from the two photographs, they were not exactly eager to make getting a photograph of them easy.