The Gouldian Finch (Erythrura gouldiae) originates in tropical northern Australia where the three head colors, Red, Black and Orange all occur naturally in the wild. With the exception of the Zebra Finch and Society Finch the Gouldian is probably the most popular finch kept in our aviaries. Gouldians breed equally well in individual cages or small colonies, preferring to build their nests in wooden nest boxes. They should be encouraged to raise their own chicks if at all possible. This finch is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful of all the tropical finches. In recent years many domestic color mutations have become available including, White-breasted, Yellow-bodied, Blue-bodied, Lilac-breasted and almost any combination of the above.
The original wild-caught Gouldian Finch had a deserved reputation for being quite delicate but the domestic stock now available is much hardier and may even remain in outside aviaries year round in some areas of the country. They require a good quality finch mix, seeding grass heads and sprouted seeds. Green food, such as endive, dandelion and watercress are very beneficial. When breeding they will require a good quality egg food and live food. Egg binding is sometimes a problem for hen Gouldians, to guard against this the birds should be given a good quality grit mix that includes finely ground oyster shell, crushed sterilized egg shell, or cuttlefish bone and ground feed quality bone.
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