Q: How do I become a successful finch breeder?
A: There are a lot of things to do, and they all must be done well. Housing. Warm, clean & dry housing with plenty of light.
Young un-related stock. You will have few, or no results with old stock. Buy your stock from a reputable breeder.
Food. A good finch mix. For example, equal parts of:- canary, red panic, yellow panic, jap millet, rye grass and french white millet. Also an additional food is a herbal mix of:- 3 parts phalaris, 1/4 part each, of niger, maw seed, red clover, chia seed (black & white), and amaranth. Topped up with a little vitamin mix, and bee pollen.
Don’t forget grit, cuttlefish, charcoal, a fine crushed oyster shell, baked eggs shells (Gouldians especially like these), and of course fresh greens and fresh water. I have already written about softfood previously.
Consistency. Why? Because birds like to be fed at the same time everyday. They like consistency in feeding softfood, livefood. If you start to feed livefood for chicks, then you must continue.
Observation. Watching your birds and making sure all look healthy and contented, and acting quickly should anything go wrong. If you want to inspect nests, do so as little as possible and never at dusk.
Cleanliness. Keeping dishes, floors, plants clean and tidy, generally being very particular with hygiene in and around the flights.
Reading. Knowledge is vital when breeding birds. You must know all you can about each species you have, or intend to buy.
Record Keeping. If you want to become a successful breeder, you must keep accurate records. Indentification of each pair of birds,
nesting habits, eggs laid, date hatched and fledged etc. Also invaluable for the following season when pairing your birds.
Q: I have a pair of Cubans, and I would like to know what members recommend in the way of a nest box. My pair have raised 1 chick this year and thrown 3 chicks out of the nest when 2-3 days old. They have nested in some bracken and have built a deep nest, which I can’t see into, to see if they have eggs, or young. Should I provide them with a better designed “nesting box”, so that I can take eggs out and put them under Bengalese if necessary?