Newb from South Africa

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Richard Johnston
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Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Aug 2020, 22:22
Location: South Africa

Hi All,

Whilst Google is filled with info for days, I felt joining this Forum will definitely get me in touch with people with first hand knowledge and maybe willing to share some wisdom for this first time finch (and bird) owner.

I currently have a large flight cage with 11 birds, two of which I recently removed when we discovered and egg in the cage (in the seed bowl). After watching them for an hour or so, we determined the egg was from one of our owl finches (double barred). We immediately set them up with a nesting spot and after an evening, they had built themselves a decent nest. We moved (very carefully and without touching) the egg to the nest and for the next day, all seemed fine. the next morning however, the one bird pecked the egg till it opened and then threw it out of the nest and I'd like to try find out why?

I am extremely wet behind the ears when it comes to finches and have tried to sex them (yes, Google) but really have no idea. The one has a clear chest whilst the other has brown patches/spots - so my guess is make and then female but it's an uneducated guess.

So after all my waffle - this is why I signed up, to tap into the wealth of knowledge and maybe find a few answers.

Any guidance is appreciated

Rich
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Craig52
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Posts: 4691
Joined: 11 Nov 2011, 19:26
Location: victoria

Hi Rich and Welcome to the Forum. Your sexing of DB's is pretty good but only on mature birds. Another way is the black on the head. The males black on the head goes further back from the beak where as the females has a u shape in it and doesn't go back as far. The black on the cock is deep black where as the hens is more a dull black in particular the tail feathers.
As far as the egg is concerned, if they have made a new nest then that egg will become a foreign object and they will reject it or even eat it if they can't physically eject it. They lay an egg a day so you should have more eggs in the nest but usually don't sit till the third egg is laid.
Inspection of the nest with these guys will most likely see them desert the nest so leave them alone and let them do their thing.
When laying and not they need a regular supply of calcium either cuttlebone or baked crushed chicken egg shells and seeding grasses as well as soaked/ sprouted seed when they have young. Cheers Craig
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Richard Johnston
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Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Aug 2020, 22:22
Location: South Africa

What a massive help, thank you. I read that once laid and hatched, feeding the hen mashed boiled chicken egg is good for them?
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Craig52
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Joined: 11 Nov 2011, 19:26
Location: victoria

Your welcome, but always supply green seeding grasses and try soaked or sprouted finch mix but replace daily
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Richard Johnston
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Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Aug 2020, 22:22
Location: South Africa

Image

These are my two - the pic looking down is of the one with the spotted chest
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finchbreeder
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Joined: 27 Jun 2009, 20:00
Location: Midwest of West. Aust. Coast
Location: Midwest of West.Aust.Coast

My Double Bars, and other finches too, like a mix of natural wood perches. Different sizes exercise their feet best. I use pruned Fruit trees and other safe native trees. The little hen does have a very blotchy chest. Much darker than any of mine. Not that I can reliably sex mine. Hope they settle down to breeding for you.
LML
LML
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Richard Johnston
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Posts: 5
Joined: 24 Aug 2020, 22:22
Location: South Africa

Thanks for the response. My flight cage has natural wood perches, the cage pictured above is a temporary cage with sandpaper like perches over cheap plastic ones that came with the cage. I separated the two above into this cage once the egg situation started and until I could find some answers.
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Craig52
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Posts: 4691
Joined: 11 Nov 2011, 19:26
Location: victoria

Both your birds seem to have a vitamin D3 deficiency which causes melanism (Black where it shouldn't be) Natural sunlight supplies D3 but if they are kept inside it can be given synthetically as liquid form. Pet shops can supply this for birds in D3 and a calcium mix together as D3 can't be absorbed efficiently without calcium which is the same if they do get natural sunshine.
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