Drama in Finch-Land

No pictures as of yet, but Friday we got a new finch. It’s that the other two (Flitter and Twitter – or Flit and Twit) had been acting … well, lonely, I suppose. We believe that they’re both male, as they trade off doing the strange little mating hop/dance that society finches do. Now, we’re OK with that, and they’d seemed to be OK with that, too, but they’d begun to really pluck themselves bald … so, we figured we needed to change something up in Finch-land.

First change was to get rid of their nest and to switch it for the lovely gourd shown to the left. It’s one we grew last year, but which broke off, so it’s suitable only for a small nesting box like this. That was quite a significant change for Flit and Twit, and they regarded it as EVIL for quite some time, and still haven’t climbed into it. Based upon that worrisome behavior, we figured we’d get them a companion, since the nest wasn’t the problem … or something. We’ve since heard tell, from the Finster Log, that finches may ignore a nest box for over a year. But, we hadn’t found that particular link yet.

So, the decision to get a new finch, perhaps of the female variety. Send one of us to the pet store … and arrive home with a female finch, certainly. A female Zebra finch, that is, because … well, because I didn’t believe that zebras could be fawn-colored and drab.

We’re waiting for the chaos to settle down. Twit has gone all still and strange, hiding in a corner. This is definitely not usual, as he’s usually the dominant one, and is quite fearless. Flit, now, has been doing the hopping dance. Considering that he was the one plucking out all of his feathers, I’m guessing that he doesn’t particularly mind that the female is of a different species, so long as the plumbing works. We’ll probably end up with some strange little half-zebra hybrids in a few months. I’m hoping that Twit will get interested as well, because Twit is the all-white one, and I believe that would be a nice cross. According to what I’ve found, the chics are likely to be sterile, but that’s not a drawback, in this case.

6 Replies to “Drama in Finch-Land”

  1. Ahhh. Oops. The new one is named Pip – short for Pippi. We’re really hoping that she’s a girl, but … oh, well, if not.

    They’re at least kind of settling in together, and were all lined up on the same perch when I brought them inside for the night.

  2. congratulations on the new addition! hope everyone gets along well. as well as becoming accustomed to the new nest which looks pretty cool to me!

  3. I hope that she really is a she and that she will be happy in her new home! I know that in a lot of species the male is colourful and the female is drab, but is there another way to tell the difference between males and females?

  4. We’re pretty sure it’s a female, because Zebra males are distinguished by … rouge on their cheeks: they have little patches of brightness beneath their eyes, where the females don’t.

    With Society finches the only way to tell the difference is that only the males do the little hop / fluff dance (supposedly / most of the time).

    We added another this afternoon, just to mess everything up: a female Spice Finch whom we’ve named Min – short for Miniver. She’s embraced the EVIL gourd already, as a place of refuge from Pip, who seems to have been enjoying her place as sole female.

    It’s thrown the whole place in turmoil once again, but at least this way we’ve got two males and two females.

    Ahh, the chaos, though. Min is fast, and quite agile, and can outfly any of the others in there, so she’s really got them all outclassed, despite her small size.


  5. Thanks for visiting my blog – comments are a great way of interlinking. I have been reading your post on web stats and find it fascinating and just a little frightening (?!). Keep up the great baking and hopefully the finches settle soon.

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