Consistent with a country-wide increase of Goldfinches, first breeding (of 6 pairs, involving 7 breeding cases; Table 1) was recorded in a part of western Drenthe in 1999. In the second half of the 1990s, Goldfinches showed a clear increase in flock size and abundance (Table 1), following conversion of farmland into fallowland. The latter offered excellent opportunities for Rumex obtusifolius, Cirsium arvense and Erigeron canadensis to invade and thrive, which in their turn attracted Goldfinches (and other species like Alauda arvensis, Carduelis cannabina and Passer montanus). Colonising Goldfinches in Drenthe are presently mainly restricted to the fertile (larger food supply available for a longer period of the year) peaty river valleys (and nearby villages), apparently mostly avoiding the sandy district of the Plateau of Drenthe. This is thought to comply with the distribution and abundance of composites, their main food resource.