My Birds

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Types of finches I've kept

Birds I have successfully bred are shown in bold text.
  • Zebra finches
  • Society finches
  • Orange cheeked waxbills
  • Owl finches
  • Shaft-tail finches
  • Spice finches
  • Lady Gouldian finches

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How I raised gouldians in Florida

Housing - When not breeding, birds are housed in a spacious (3' wide x 7' tall x 6' long) panel-form indoor aviary. The aviary contains live, nontoxic, potted plants for perching and full spectrum lighting on a timer that is adjusted seasonally. For breeding, birds are paired in individual (30" long x 18" deep x 18" high) breeding cages which are also fitted with full spectrum lighting on a timer. Ambient temperatures range from 70-80°F.

Feeding - All birds are on a pellet-based diet (Lafeber's and Kaytee Exact) and have access to fresh water and a cuttle bone daily. In addition to this staple diet, seeds are provided on occasion, and an egg mix (boiled egg chopped shell and all mixed with shredded organic romaine lettuce and/or parsley, shredded cheddar cheese, and finely ground sunflower seed kernels) is provided several times weekly when not breeding, and daily when breeding (as well as daily when molting).

Health Care - New arrivals are quarantined for at least 6 weeks, during which time they are automatically treated for mites, worms, coccidia, and other internal parasites. Established birds are routinely (preventatively) treated when not breeding for the aforementioned parasites as well. Nails are trimmed as needed. Ill birds do receive veterinary care. Dishes are cleaned daily, and enclosures are cleaned regularly and disinfected as needed.

Breeding - Only unrelated, healthy birds are bred to each other. All chicks are parent raised or, in case of "emergency," fostered to birds of the same species to prevent imprinting. If adults repeatedly demonstrate inappropriate parenting skills (e.g. chick tossing), they are culled from the breeding program. Plastic nest boxes and coconut fiber are provided for nesting. Chicks are closed banded when possible.

Record Keeping - Detailed records are kept on each breeding bird and any young they may produce. Records include, when known: hatch date (age), sex, phenotype (physical description), genotype, family history, breeding set-up used, medical history, and any general notes.

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