Saturday, September 14, 2013

My Growing Bird Obsession

Long time no post I know, I've been off my feet with chest infections and a couple nasty knee injuries. But I'm back!

During my convalescence I gradually acquired nine Zebra Finches (four pairs and a spare cock as hens are difficult to find in my region at the moment) which set me off on a long lost hobby. I had kept finches many years ago, even attempting to breed Gouldian Finches when I was in primary school (which did not end well as my breeding pairs kept dying due to being bad stock from bad breeders. And loosing a Gouldian Finch when you're in primary school is not a cheap thing to have happen), but gave it up as my birds died I didn't replenish my stock.

But for some reason I just started up again, buying or being given birds I liked. As I built up my Zebra Finch collection I started converting our old sun deck, which is fully enclosed, into somewhat of a bird room (it was going to be half bird room, half fish room but I decided to make it all birds and move my fish into the sealed garage under me) and this is the results so far:

My Zebra Finches have begun to breed, having nine babies so far. I had a friend who breeds Budgies help me band the first clutch and I banded the second, and man it's difficult putting something so small onto something so small! This is my first ever fledgling:

I have also added to the collection, as you can see from the video. From my original nine Zebra Finches I purchased my Bourke's Parrot first, my first non-finch in quite a long time, and have been searching for a Rosa hen for him ever since. Then I got my Elegant Parrot. I had walked into the only pet store that deals in Marine fish and good quality birds (including licensed birds) in Tamworth, Macawsome Pets, and spotted a Lutino Elegant hen with a split male. I immediately asked how much but had been beaten to the punch as a fellow aviculture enthusiast (who seems to have esp in regards to when new birds arrive) had bought them the previous day. I grabbed the last one they had, who was a rather nice looking cock, and went on my merry way. After that I bought a pair of Orange-Breasted Waxbills (boy are they cute... and tiny, very tiny!), handraised Eclectus hen (named Charlotte) and a handraised Masked Lovebird.

That Lovebird set me onto the next part of my collection: Lovebirds! I got Macawsome Pets to hold an Albino and Violet Masked Lovebird until I had my breeding cabinets built. Well this took me a while to even get one made and by then they had gotten a pair of hybrids in, a Masked x Fischer's cross. I had been going to get a pair of Peach Faced Lovebirds but opted for the hybrids as they were gorgeous. I plan to further develop them and am currently waiting for their first clutch so as I can build up a breeding program for them. I'll be DNA sexing the Violet and Albino birds and am hoping that they are a cock and hen pair as I want to pair them up.

And if that isn't enough I recently bought two pairs of Gouldian Finches, with the two hens being split to Australian Yellow! One of the hens is of breeding age, while the other is of this years nest so will take some time to mature. My cocks are normal Red Headed Gouldians so I won't throw any Australia Yellows but I mainly just want to see if the hens'll breed and if they do I'll use the money I get from the chicks to find two Aussie Yellow cocks. I also have on hold a Lutino Masked Lovebird hen! and a yet unknown mutation and sex yellow Masked Lovebird.

All in all I have the beginnings of a rather nice bird collection and I'm loving it!

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