Peter's Twinspot
PO  Box 126 Mitcham Vic 3132 ( Victoria, Australia )

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. Peter's twinspot
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  • Scientific Name: Hypargos niveoguttatus
  • Common Name/s: PETER'S TWINSPOT.
  • Sub Species in country / area of origin: 3
  • Origin / Distribution: South eastern parts Africa
  • Habitat In Wild:  Inhabit the edges of forests and in dense scrub. Grasslands and shrubs, and frequents farmlands and cultivated areas.
  • Status In Wild: ?
  • Status In (Australian) Captivity: Rare
  • Age To Sexual Maturity: About 12 months.
  • Adult plumage: attained at about 2 - 3 months  
  • Best breeding years (estimate): 2nd - 5th
  • Lifespan (estimate):  approx. 7 - 8  years 
  • Sexing: Monomorphic / Dimorphic
  • Colour mutations: None
  • Availability: Rare. Specialist breeders only.
  • Temperament: Cock birds are very territorial and aggressive during the breeding season.  Pairs should not be housed in adjoining aviaries.  They tend to be shy birds and do well in a planted aviary.
  • Cost (Victoria) Per Pair: - Normal colour (Approx.) $3000
  • Description Of Adults:  These birds have spots that are arranged in pairs or "twins".  Hence its Twinspot name.  Largest of the Twinspots.
  1. Length: Approx. 125 mm (or approx  5 inches)
  2. Colour ( "normal" colour ): Refer photo/s above if available.
  3. Weight: Approx.16 - 18 gms (or approx. 1/2 ozs)

Aviary Notes:

Read notes on "Finches - Non 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" web page.

Housing Requirements:  Click on "Housing birds" web page for general details on the housing of Australian Finches or read on for specific details for this finch.

May be kept with other finches but with their rarity in Australian aviaries it would be best to give each pair a planted aviary of their own.  To minimize the aggression between pairs, pairs should not be housed in adjoining aviaries.

These birds spend considerable amounts of time on the aviary floor.

Catching, handling and transportation of these birds requires more care and attention than most of the other species if finches.  They tend to be more "delicate" than the other more common finches.

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 finch.

Good quality finch mix, seeding grasses and some fruits (e.g. apple).  Live food is essential especially at breeding season.  Small mealworms, small crickets and small locusts can be offered.  Sprouted or soaked seed if available.  Leafy green vegetables can be offered.

Basic seed mix should include Canary seed, White French Millet, Japanese Millet, and Yellow and Red Panicum.

Nesting:  A basic overview only.

  • Roosting nest: Yes / No
  • Nesting months:
  • Nesting receptacles:  Will nest in natural low shrubs, dried bundled branches such as tea tree, or long grasses.  Some will breed in a variety of artificial nests such as a half open wooden nest box.
  • Nest:  Both birds build a dome shaped nest often with a side entrance.  Nest is made from grasses and other suitable materials and lined with feathers and soft fine grasses.
  • Who incubates the eggs: Hen / cock / both share.

Nests are built low to the ground.  Some may make a nest ground level.  Adequate new nest material must be available for the birds to rebuild the old nest or build a new nest for the next clutch.

Nest inspections are not tolerated.

More details on finch nests 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. 

Breeding: Egg Colour White.  Clutch/s per year  2 - 3.  Eggs per nest 3 - 6.  Incubation approx. 12 - 14 days.  Fledge approx. 3 - 4 weeks.  Independent approx. another 4 weeks.

First bred in Adelaide prior to World War 1.

May be kept with other finches but with their rarity in Australian aviaries it would be best to give each pair an aviary of their own.  Some hens may lay at 6 months of age but it is better if the hen is allowed to fully mature and start breeding at about 12 months of age.

Young should be removed from the parent birds as soon as they are fully independent so as to avoid possible aggression from a parent.

Both parent feed the young.  The young may return to the nest for a few days after they fledge.

Extreme care must be exercised if birds have to be re-paired to a new partner.

With their low numbers in Australia, it is essential to find out as much background genetic history of each bird to avoid pairing up closely related birds.  The successful breeding of the Dybowski's Twinspot lasted till the 1990's and since then breeding results have been few.  A breeding register may be required to minimize the risks of breeding with close relatives in most of the rarer birds in Australia.

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.

Health Issues: 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" web page.
  • Avian medicine is advancing at a rapid pace.  Keep updating your knowledge and skills.

General References:  Refer to references listed on "Book References" web page.

Specific References:

  • Australian Aviculture

  • A/A Vol 17 No 3 Mar 1963 Page 37-38.
  • A/A Vol 14 No 7 Jul 1960 Page 97-99.
  • A/A Vol 12 No 1 Jan 1958 Page 12-14.
  • Australian Birdkeeper
  • ABK Vol 18 Issue 8. Apr-May 2005 Page 457-461 (Inc photos).

Top of - Peter's Twinspot- Page is one of the world's largest and most informative avian or bird web sites.  Copyright 2002 - 2008 inc.  All rights reserved.  Disclaimer:  This web site has been compiled from material provided from a large number of sources.  Personal experience and personal contacts have been used.  Results vary according to factors such as environmental factors, aviary design and the physical and genetic backgrounds of all living birds/animals.  Every endeavour has been made to ensure the accuracy of the material but no responsibility is accepted by  for the accuracy of the material on this web site. The intent of this web site is to provide a "care sheet"  format and provide general material only.  Readers should rely upon their own enquiries in making any decisions relating to their own interests.