Finch, the common name of a family of more than 120 species of perching birds. These birds are found on every continent except Australia; there are about 15 species in North America. Besides the birds called finches, the family includes canaries, crossbills, redpolls, siskins, and certain grosbeaks. (There are also a number of birds that are not members of the finch family that are called finches.)

Members of the finch family range from about 4 inches (10 cm) to about 10 inches (25 cm) in length. The males are typically brightly colored; many are red, yellow, blue, or green. The females usually have a dull color. The males of many species are known for their beautiful songs.

Most members of the finch family have stout, cone-shaped bills adapted to crushing seeds. The birds live chiefly on seeds, but they also eat insects, spiders, slugs, and snails. Some are wholly carnivorous, while a few eat buds and fruits. Finches destroy weed seeds and harmful insects.

FinchesFinches have stout, cone-shaped bills for crushing seeds.

Finches belong to five families: Emberizidae, Fringillidae, Passeridae, Ploceidae, and Estrildidae.