As spring approaches, many bird enthusiasts are excited to see their feathered friends once again. One of the most exciting things to watch during this time of year is birds building their nests. A species that is known for their intricate and beautiful nest-building skills is the finch.

But what kinds of materials do finches prefer for their nests?

Natural Materials

Finches are known for using natural materials in their nests. This can include grasses, twigs, and small leaves. They often prefer materials that are soft and pliable, making it easier for them to form their nest structures. You can attract finches to your yard by providing an area where these natural materials are readily available. Try planting shrubs or trees that can provide nesting materials.

Animal Fibers

Another type of nesting material that finches prefer is animal fibers. This can include sheep’s wool or other animal fur. These materials are soft and warm, providing protection and insulation for the eggs and young. You can easily provide animal fibers by placing them in a suet cage or mesh bag near your bird feeders.

Synthetic Materials

While finches do prefer natural materials, they have been known to use synthetic materials as well. This can include string, yarn, and even dryer lint. These materials should be used sparingly as they can entangle birds and even cause harm. If you do use synthetic materials, make sure they are short and easy to manipulate.

Feather Down

Another type of animal fiber that finches love is feather down. This is often obtained from ducks or geese and can be used for insulation and cushioning in the nest. You can attract finches by placing a clean feather down in a suet cage or birdhouse.


Last but not least, mud is an important component for many bird species’ nests including finches’. Mud can be used to hold natural materials together and provide structure to the nest. If you’re looking to attract finches to your yard, provide a mud source such as a shallow bird bath or fountain. This will not only attract finches but other bird species as well.


Attracting finches to your yard can be an exciting addition to your springtime birdwatching. By providing the right types of nesting materials, you can help these beautiful birds build their nests and raise their young in your backyard.

Remember to use natural materials whenever possible and avoid using synthetic materials that can harm birds. Happy birdwatching!