Zebra Finch Photos

Zebra Finch

Zebra Finch, also known as Chestnut-eared finch, spotted-sided finch and Nyi-Nyi, is a small bird with a thick, pointed triangular beak, grayish-brown wings and a black and white striped chest like a zebra. Being a popular choice of pets, these birds have been bred in captivity for many years.

Zebra Finch Scientific Classification
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Aves
Order Passeriformes
Family Estrildidae
Genus Taeniopygia
Scientific name Taeniopygia guttata
Zebra Finch
Zebra Finch
Zebra Finch Birds
Zebra Finch Birds
 Zebra Finch Quick Information
Distribution Australia, Lesser Sunda Island (North west Australia), Indonesia, East Timor
Habitat Open steppes, grassland and forests near water bodies
Color Gray, Black, white, orange, red
Size 10cm to 11cm
Wingspan 22cm
Weight 15gm to 20gm
Diet Grass seeds
Life Span About 5 years in the wild, 7 to 10 years in captivity.
Egg hatching time 12 to 16 days
Clutch size 4 to 8 eggs
Singing Ability Seen in males
Temperament Active, Calm
IUCN Conservation Status Least Concern
Zebra Finch Images
Zebra Finch Images

 

Zebra Finch Pictures
Zebra Finch Pictures

Mutation

Several color mutations of the Zebra Finch is available like grey, dominant silver, fawn, saddle backed, chestnut flanked white, yellow beak, black bodied silver, cream backed, dark cream and so on.

Zebra Finch Pet Care

Their cheerful, rhythmic song as well as their bright colorful appearance makes them popular as pets.

Housing

A large, spacious, well ventilated cage of about 30 inches in length, placed in a quiet corner of the house is suitable for these birds. It is advisable to keep only a pair of finches in a single cage due to the territorial nature of the males. Soft wood or natural branches placed inside the cage form good perching spots. But, make sure not to keep more than two perches, as it may reduce their flying space. Small bells or ladders may be kept inside the cage; however, long strings should be avoided to prevent any obstruction or injury during flight. They can also be kept in aviaries, which should be protected from hawks, cats as well as harsh weather conditions. While keeping multiple pairs in a big cage, pinch clothespins may be placed on the perches at a distance of about six inches to demarcate the territory of each pair.

Zebra Finch Nest
Zebra Finch Nest

Nest box and basket

It is recommended to provide a nest basket as these birds enjoy sleeping in nests. A wooden nest box is also required, as they have a habit of laying their eggs in any available space, including the food tray.

Substrate

A paper substrate should be placed at the bottom of the cage so that any abnormalities in their droppings may be easily inspected. It is to be changed on a daily basis to ensure proper hygiene. Grass and soft hay form a good substrate for nest boxes.

Zebra Finch Cage
Zebra Finch Cage

Temperature

The birds are well adjusted to room temperatures, but must be kept away from air conditioning units or cold drafts. During breeding, the temperature should not fall below 5 to 10 degree Celsius. They thrive well in a moderately warm environment; however, direct sunlight should be avoided.

Lighting

Though full spectrum lighting is often used by people to prevent molting, it is not necessary for the Zebra finch.  Artificial UVB or UVA lighting may be used if the room they are kept in has insufficient lighting.

Female Zebra Finch
Female Zebra Finch
Male Zebra Finch
Male Zebra Finch
White Zebra Finch
White Zebra Finch

Temperament

These calm, sociable birds tend to display their loyalty to their owners by fluttering or singing in his presence. However, they dislike being touched or cuddled.

Feeding

These seed-eating birds are fond of millet seeds, while any sprouted seeds are beneficial for them. Proper amount of fruits and vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes, romaine lettuce, broccoli, spinach, apple, banana, mangoes must be added to their regular diet. Cuttle bone, hard-shelled boiled eggs, grits and pellets form a good source of calcium and vitamins. Fresh, clean water should be provided to them every day.

Babies Zebra Finch
Babies Zebra Finch
Baby Zebra Finch
Baby Zebra Finch
Zebra Finch Eggs Pictures
Zebra Finch Eggs Pictures
Zebra Finch Eggs
Zebra Finch Eggs

Care

A shallow dish of water should be placed at the bottom of their cage for bathing to keep their feathers clean. Their nails should be occasionally trimmed, but caution must be taken as little bleeding may be fatal for them.

Health problems

Most of the illness suffered by these otherwise hardy finches is due to improper diet as well as unclean environment. Some of the common diseases are leg cramps, heat stroke, egg binding, mites, diarrhea, sore eyes, scaly legs, broken wings, baldness, constipation, tumors and concussion. Sick birds should be isolated and kept in a separate cage with a temperature of about 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

Zebra Finch Photos
Zebra Finch Photos

Other facts

  • The males of dimorphic species can be distinguished from the females by the bright chestnut patches on their cheeks.
  • The male finches incorporate sounds from their surroundings in their mating calls.
  • Scientists have discovered that the male finch’s song is a result of about 2000 genes present in a specific area in its brain, known as “Area X”.
  • After being weaned, the young ones are chased off by their parents who start a different clutch of eggs.

References:

http://birdsflight.com/types-finches-different-types-finches/

http://www.petuniversity.com/birds/canaries-finches/zebra-finch.htm

http://www.zebrafinch-society.org/zebra-finch-cage.htm

http://zebrafinchsociety.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&Zebra%20Finch%20FAQstask=view&id=20&Itemid=28

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