Finches (Family Fringillidae)

October 24, 2012

The finch family is very large (140 species) and diverse. Some finches that are kept as pets include long-tailed finches, Erythrura [Chloebia] gouldiae or Gouldian Finch, and red-faced parrot Finch. Society (Bengalese) Finch, Senegal fire Finch (red-billed fire Finch), masked Finch, melba Finch, cutthroat Finch, zebra Finch, star Finch, red-headed Finch (Paradise Sparrow), Tiger Finch, Owl Finch, and grey singing Finch are other species available.

Finches are sociable birds, so they should be housed in pairs (allow at least 3 m2 per pair), and it is important to provide suitable nesting boxes. Proper diet for these birds includes: insects, greens, seeds (unripe and ripened), sprouts (germinated seeds), egg (hardboiled), crumbs, corn, a calcium source, and lots fresh water.

In general, finches have a clutch of three to four eggs. Approximate incubation: 14 to 16 days. Fledging: 18 to 22 days. There is considerable variation though, for example Gouldian finches: Clutch: five to six eggs or more, Incubation: 14 to 16 days, Fledging: 21 to 24 days.

Lifespan for finches is about two to eight years for small ones and eight to 12 years for large ones.