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arthur
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http://www.hofmann-photography.de/index ... ld/afrika/

Spend your self-isolation memorising the names of these little beauties . .
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Storz
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Location: Hamilton Vic

Fantastic collection of photographs, we can only wonder about having a choice like that to go with the already fantastic choice that we have of our native finches
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arthur
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With distinct sub-species included, Australia boasts about 20 finch varieties . . and that is without the many colour mutations

The number of exotics which currently grace our aviaries, together with those that have been 'lost' make up far more than 20

Sadly we can't turn back the clock; but there can be no doubt that should the knowledge and resources available today, have been available in the past, most, if not all of the casualties could have been maintained
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arthur
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Hard to say that any bird of any species is definitely extinct in Australian aviaries . . there well may be some old or not so old hard-heads with viable populations that have been hidden away from prying eyes for very good reason

Quite a few keepers of rare birds didn't declare their stock, even when NEBRS and its incarnations reared their ugly heads . .

Below is a list of 'finches' . . in no particular order, that I know were here, in varying numbers, from the 50's to the present day . . with random comment

Other senior members may be able to add to the list . .
finch aberdee.jpg


ABERDEEN . . Still around (Go Noah!) . . Never as common as their Cut-throat cousin . . Had a pair in the 70's . . young all had misshapen beaks . . obviously too closely related

BRONZE-WINGED MANNIKIN . . In those days African 'munias' were 'mannikins' . . Asians were 'nuns' . . Quite common 60's & 70's

MAGPIE MANNIKIN . . NOT the JAVAN MUNIA . . First saw these at a Sydney dealership in '73 . . bought 3 pr (well 6 birds) @ $70 pr . . bought another later (sight unseen) . . [email protected]#$ hybrid . . Did not breed for me . . Perhaps they were too old/ perhaps I was too young

RUFOUS-BACKED MANNIKIN . . Used to be quite common . . bred well for me . . Nearly fell over on seeing current price . . What happened?

BURMESE NUN (Grey-Headed Nun) . . Probably never common . . A few in Brisbane, and probably elsewhere, 60's & 70's

AFRICAN SILVERBILL . . Today's 'Silverbills' are probably hybrids derived from African/Indian crosses

RED-SHOULDERED WHYDAH . . mate of mine kept and bred . . very scarce these days

RUSS WEAVERS . . A sub-species of the Red-Billed Quealea . . Same mate had a pair . . I referred to them as 'Grey Nomads' . . They were as old as the hills, tough as boots, and went on holiday right round Australia, all expenses paid . . too old to breed and were passed from aviary to aviary

VIRGINIAN CARDINAL . . Probably fair to say that this bird was 'one of a kind' . . as was his owner Bob McG - L who won "Champion Bird" at the Brisbane Exhibition in the late 60's with his "Red-Bird" . . Stories about Bob are the stuff of legend . . Let's just say that he had a very healthy disregard for authority

PYGMY CARDINAL(Black-Crested Finch) . . Same mate 'baby-sat' and bred these for Gordon M. who was a well known Brisbane 'fincho' with many a rare species in his collection

RED-CRESTED CARDINAL . . Probably one of the species that would still be with us . . (and maybe it is) . . had the current live-food production expertise been available 'back in the day' . . They were hardy, long-lived birds and weren't hard to get to nest; the difficulty was in fledging the young because of dietary needs . . the dedicated 'old hands' were quite successful

To Be Continued ...
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Last edited by arthur on 26 Mar 2020, 17:36, edited 1 time in total.
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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About "Burmese Nuns". What are these like? I can't find anything online about them, "Burmese Nun" comes up with a bunch of actual nuns, and "Grey-Headed Munia" comes up with Black and Silver Headed. Can anyone provide more info?
Split Blue Gouldian, Plum-Headed Finch and African Silverbill Breeding Project 2020
Queensland Finch Society Member
2019 ABK Magazine Young Birdkeeper Winner
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arthur
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My recollection is a bit fuzzy . . I remember them as similar to White-Headed Nuns but with a much greyer 'white area' . . I never kept them

They were also known as Sooty Nuns . .

Robin Restall in his work "Mannikins and Munias" refers to the Dusky Munia, but I can't isolate an illustration to see if it is the bird in question

Back in the 60's and 70's it was a lot easier to 'bring birds in' . . and such activity was generally regarded, rightly or wrongly as a victimless 'crime' . . with no harm done

Birds could also be bought from foreign seamen on the wharves of larger Australian ports quite openly . . life was simpler then . .and with S.E.Asia being our nearest neighbor, those birds would obviously be well represented

Perhaps the Burmese/ Grey-Headed/ Sooty Nuns were a one off import . . and may well have been a sub-species or local variant of the White-Headed Nun

Whatever . .
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finchbreeder
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Location: Midwest of West.Aust.Coast

Ah how nice it would be to have access to some of those beauties. And I include the monochromatics in my definition of beauties.
LML
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Kdawg
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Location: Clayton South Victoria

Kept both sooty nuns and grey crowned mannikins back in the early 70's but was unable to breed from either of them.
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Brisbane_Finches_333
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I believe these Burmese Nuns might be called Buff-Bellied Mannikins, images for "Sooty Nuns" comes up with pictures of actual nuns again...
Split Blue Gouldian, Plum-Headed Finch and African Silverbill Breeding Project 2020
Queensland Finch Society Member
2019 ABK Magazine Young Birdkeeper Winner
YouTube Channel: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCfbqdzIB_SeSjt6cZfRYOPg
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noah.till
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Wow this is a good thread, I'll be following this intensively
I love to hear the stories of the birds of the past that have been in Aus
And thanks Arthur for the little side note about the Aberdeens :thumbup: , should be getting a hen very shortly from a mate of mine for my cock
Downs Bird Breeders Association and Queensland Finch Society Member
2018 Australian Birdkeepers Magazine Young Birdkeeper
Javan Munia, Black Rumped Double bar and Aberdeen Breeding Project
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