Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Prolific Lady Gouldian Finches

Duke and Duchess have successfully fledged their second clutch. All six hatchlings are healthy and eating on their own. Meanwhile, even before the babies left the nest, Duchess had laid two more eggs! Currently, she has five, but her first and second clutches were seven. Probably more eggs to come.

Duke has a mouthful of paper shreds. Baby at left.
Cup holding paper shreds.
I like to have newspaper on the bottom of our cages.
It is changed regularly and keeps everything clean.
Since Duke was tearing it into big shreds, I gave him a
cup full of paper from the paper shredder. He loves it.
Duke is happily revamping the nest box. No chance for me to clean it out, but he makes sure it's nice and tidy for another clutch. He has covered up all evidence of the last clutch and made it look spic and span. One problem, however. He covered up Duchess's first two eggs. Then she laid two more. He covered those up too!

So, today I went into the box and dug around to find those eggs. Found five buried eggs and moved them back to the surface. I candled them first, but since she hasn't been sitting on them I'm not certain if any, or all, are fertile. Two appear to possibly have veins in them, indicating fertility. They were probably warmed by the previous youngsters who are still returning to the nest box at night. The first clutch of five babies didn't do that, but this second clutch of six does return nightly.

Held the camera inside the cage for this photo.
Duke with shreds in his mouth.

Eight birds require a lot of food. Several dishes on the
bottom of the cage with a variety of food for the
babies to learn to eat on their own.

Duchess is still feeding her brood, even though they are eating on their own as well. Duke isn't interested in the young birds and has even knocked one or two off the perch when they've been in his way. Soon they will be moved to a cage of their own.

Peace & Blessings.

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