Photo: Fluffy goldfinch shines on a branch

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Our photo of the day comes from Eagles Mere, Pennsylvania.

Excuse us while we coo over this little ball of golden fluff, photographed so beautifully by Richard Liebert. But while we swoon, the goldfinch is just taking care of winter business – staying warm. As Audubon explains, smaller birds puff up into the shape of a little round beach ball to minimize heat loss. They bulk up in other ways as well: "Birds can also put on fat as both an insulator and energy source: More than 10 percent of winter body weight may be fat in certain species, including chickadees and finches. As a result, some birds spend the vast majority of their daylight hours seeking fatty food sources." #same

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