. Chestnut breasted finch
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- Length: Approx. 100 - 115 mm (or 4 - 4.5 inches)
- Colour ( "normal" colour ): Refer
photo/s above if available.
- Weight: Approx. 17 gms (or about 1/2 ozs)
on "Finches - Australian" web page
and use in conjunction with details
outlined on this page.
Level Of Knowledge Required:
Beginner / Intermediate / Advanced / Specialist Breeders Only.
Government Regulations &
By-Laws: Refer to "Government Laws" page.
Click on "Housing birds"
web page for general details on the housing
of Australian Finches or read on for specific details for this finch.
A planted aviary is preferred for the
Chestnut breasted finch but they (one pair) can be bred in a large Canary breeder cage. Young chestnut breasted
finches can be destructive to the aviary plants and may be best placed
in an aviary devoid of shrubs till they reach adulthood. Adult birds
tend to be less destructive of live shrubs and plants.
One of the best species to purchase if you want to breed them as a
colony in an aviary.
Suitable for a mixed finch collection but may harass smaller finches. Caution -
the Chestnut breasted finch will hybridize
with many other finch species so care must be taken to avoid this
In a colony situation in an aviary, make sure there are no spare cock
birds. Even one spare cock bird can disrupt breeding pairs.
Can be housed in a planted aviary, small aviary or a
large canary style cage. Can be bred indoors in a cabinet of about 900mm long x 400mm deep x
400mm high (36 x 16 x 16 inches).
Diet / Feeding: Click on "Feeding birds"
web page for general details on the
nutrition of Australian Finches or read on for specific details for this
The Chestnut breasted finch requires a good quality finch seed mix, seeding grasses
and some fruits (e.g. apple) and green leafy vegetables. Sprouted
or soaked seed if available. Live food is not essential
during the non-breeding season but is essential during breeding season
to achieve optimal results. Mealworms are ideal,
small crickets, small captive bred cockroaches and small locusts
are also liked. The best breeding results are generally obtained
from the pairs that feed live foods to the young.
Basic seed mix should include Canary
seed, White French Millet, Japanese Millet, and Yellow and Red Panicum.
A basic overview only.
- Roosting nest: No
- Nesting months: Usually
spring to autumn but may breed year round if conditions are
- Nesting receptacles: The
Chestnut breasted finch will breed in tall dense grasses or in shrubs or dry brush such as
tea tree. Equally it will build a nest in a wide variety of
artificial nests including nest boxes and wire baskets. Nests should
be under the roofed section of the aviary.
- Nest: Large dome shaped made
with grasses usually without an entrance tunnel. Nest is lined
with fine grasses and some may add some feathers. November and swamp
grass are ideal. Often built in a secluded part of the aviary.
- Who incubates the eggs: Hen
during the night, both share during the day.
If large wire baskets are used, it can
be loosely filled with nesting material and a cavity pushed into the
centre of the material with a hand or fist. This will leave an
entrance hole and the birds can finish the nest building and line the
nest. Before the next clutch has commenced, the old nest can be
partially or fully removed, new nest material added to the basket and
allow the birds to finish the new clean nest. Adequate nest
material must be available.
More details on
and a selection of finch nest photos
can be located on the "nests", "finch nests"
and "finch nest photos"
web pages. Click on "Up" then "nests" then
"finch nests" and "finch nests photos" in
the navigation bars.
Egg Colour White. Clutch/s
per year 2 or more. Eggs per nest 5 - 8. Incubation
approx 13 days. Fledge approx. 21 days.
Independent approx. another 21 - 28 days.
Young should be removed from the parents
after they have become fully independent.
As with most insect eating finches, the increased consumption of
livefoods is a good indication that there is young in the nest.
Caution - The Chestnut breasted finch will hybridize with many other finch species so care must
be taken to avoid this possibility.
A leg ring can be placed on the leg of
the young bird as soon as it leaves the nest.
Artificial incubation, hand rearing or fostering will not be
covered on this web site. It is too complex and diverse in nature to be
attempted here. Refer "Specific References" as listed below and
"General References" listings.
Refer "Avian Health Issues"
web page for information and references.
- Worming and parasite control and Quarantine
requirements of new birds or sick birds are considered to
require veterinary advice and therefore not covered on this web
site. Refer above option "Avian Health Issues"
- Avian medicine is advancing at a rapid pace. Keep
updating your knowledge and skills.
Refer to references listed on "Book
References" web page.
- A/A Vol 59 No. 12 Dec 2005 Page 277-281.
- A/A Vol 58 No. 12 Dec 2004 Page 270-272 (Inc. photo).
- A/A Vol 44 No. 10 Oct 1990 Page 262-265 (Inc photo)
- A/A Vol 36 No. 12
Dec 1982 Page 267-269 (Inc photo)
- A/A Vol 29 No. 5 May 1975 Page 72-73
- A/A Vol 19 No 9 Sept 1965 Page 126-127.
- A/A Vol 10 No 5 May 1956 Page 58-59.
- A/A Vol 5 No 10 Oct 1951 Page 116-118.
- A/A Vol 3 No 9 Sept 1949 Page 98 (Sexing Aust. finches).
- Australian Birdkeeper
- ABK Vol 13 Issue 4. Aug-Sept 2000 Page 214
- ABK Vol 9 Issue 6. Dec-Jan 1997 Page 281-282
- ABK Vol 3 Issue 2. Apr-May 1990 Page 61-64 (Part 3)
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