Scared finches They are rightfully popular among amateurs, because they are original in color, very mobile and have interesting behavior. They live on the islands of the Pacific Ocean, some islands of the Indo-Australian archipelago and in Australia.
Unfortunately, not enough information has been collected on their ecology so far, which is explained by the rarity of many species of parrot finches, limited distribution and secretive lifestyle. There are 10 species of these birds.
Tricolor parrot finch(Erythrura trichroa) - one of the most famous species lovers. She lives in the Moluccas, Caroline and Solomon Islands, on the island of Sulawesi, New Guinea, the Bismarck archipelago, the New Hebrides and some other islands in the Pacific Ocean, as well as on the Cape York Peninsula in northern Australia. Within the range, there are 7 subspecies of the tricolor parrot finch, differing among themselves by variations in plumage color and size.
Bright tropical colors in the plumage of birds, so necessary in the equatorial belt for a secretive lifestyle, distinguish these birds from other wax-billed weavers in their cage keeping. Indeed, against the background of the grass-green body, the purple head and red upper tail stand out.The tail feathers are also red, but the upper tail is duller, the two middle feathers are elongated. Flight feathers are brownish, bill is black, legs are light brown. The female and the male are colored almost the same - it is difficult for an inexperienced amateur to distinguish between them. However, looking closely, you will notice that the female's purple "mask" is somewhat smaller and slightly dimmer than that of the male.
The female does not sing, it is smaller in size, which, however, cannot always be detected by visual examination of the birds. It also differs in a more horizontal body position. In young birds, the plumage is dull, the abdomen is olive green. The purple color of the plumage on the head is either absent or slightly developed. The beak is light brown, lighter at the base.
Parrot finches live on mountain slopes partially overgrown with shrubs and trees, not far from water, they are usually found at an altitude of 800 m above sea level, but sometimes they are found at an altitude of 2400 m.This indicates the ability of birds to adapt to existence at low temperatures. They live not only in wild forests, but also in parks, along the edges of plantations of cultivated plants. Where the population is cutting down the forest, the number of parrot finches also increases. The birds feed on the seeds of various grasses. They often live on the edges of grassy fields or fields of grain crops, where they keep near trees and bushes, in which they hide from danger. Parrot finches spend the night in the dense crown of tall trees. Feeding activity in them was noted already half an hour before sunrise. At this time, the birds fly from branch to branch, moving to the edge of the clearing, where they feed until 11 o'clock in the morning.The hottest period, from 11 am to 3 pm, the birds spend in dense intertwined branches of trees and bushes. A new period of foraging activity lasts from 15 hours before sunset.
During the non-nesting period, finches are kept in flocks, as a rule, in small ones. With a lack of food, the flocks are divided into smaller ones and wander in search of nourishing places. During the mating season, couples separate from the flocks and start building nests, which are located in the dense crowns of trees, in their shady part. An oval-shaped nest with a side hole is made from herbs, leaves and various plant fibers. From the inside, it is lined with soft grasses and roots. The main nesting period lasts from October to February. There are 3-6 white eggs in a clutch. Nesting ecology has been studied mainly on individuals kept in captivity.
This species was introduced to Europe in 1886, and in 1887 the first offspring were obtained from birds. Due to the difficulties in delivery, the importation of parrot finches to Europe at that time was rare, so closely related crossbreeding began, which led to the weakening of the offspring, the loss of their vitality. The only species imported from Indonesia was bulbous parrot finch(Erythrura prasina).
In the 50-60s, red-headed, tricolor, short-tailed and other types of parrot finches entered the European markets, which were imported from Japan and directly from natural habitats. Thanks to this, various types of finches quickly spread among amateurs. The most common of them are tricolor and red-headed parrot finches.This was facilitated by the sufficient ease of breeding them in captivity.
Re: Red-headed Finch (Erythrura psittacea)
Message Dobroslava »25 Aug 2017, 19:23
Excerpts from the article Marcus Pollard
"If this bird does not fly at 100 km / h, then start panicking!" A quote I remember well as the most accurate way to describe the health of a red-headed finch. They are one of the most active birds, and if you see them sitting up during the day, they are most likely sick.
This "active lifestyle" and inquisitive nature means that these birds spend a lot of time on the ground and should be handled regularly, especially for tapeworms, like any other bird that consumes large amounts of live food. My birds are regularly treated for coccidia and protozoa parasites.
When these birds move from enclosure to enclosure, they often fall into heavy moulting and care should be taken to ensure they receive a multivitamin supplement during this stressful period. A good health program and limiting their nesting to 3-4 clutches each year, and the birds in your collection will delight you for years. But, be careful, miss their helminths, and you will lose these birds very quickly.
Photos from the collections of Belarusian breeders