Scientific Name (Lonchura Punctulata) Other Names Scaly-breasted Munia, Nutmeg Mannikin, Spotted Munia, Nutmeg Finch Genus Animalia Kingdom Chordata Phylum Aves Class Passeriformes Order Passeroidea Subfamily N/A Family Estrildidae Origin
Asia, India, Java and parts of the Philippines.
They were later introduced to Puerto Rico and Hispaniola as well as parts of Australia and the United States of America.
Type Warm-blooded vertebrate animals that have wings, feathers, a beak, strong, hollow bones and no teeth. They have powerful flight muscles. Natural Environment Spice finches live in grasslands and forests usually close to a water source. They can be found perching in bushes and trees or flying from one to the other. They have adapted very well to human disturbances and will take advantage of man-made watering holes or deforested land. They are very social creatures living in flocks and are rarely seen by them self. Temperament Spice finches are very social birds and should be kept as a pair or in a small flock. The spice finch is a skittish bird that will normally not bond with its owners and most do not like to be handled. If provided with other finch to live with they will thrive and be very active. Gender
Both genders look identical and the only way to tell them apart is through the males courtship song.
Coloration They have a nutmeg brown head, back and tail. On their under belly they have very striking scaled patterns. The beak and legs are a dark gray and they have dark brown eyes. Bird Size 5 inches (12.5cm) Life Expectancy 6 to 8 years Cage Size A decent sized cage is about 30 inches long, by 18 inches high and 18 inches wide. Getting the largest cage available is always best for your bird so they have plenty of room to fly. Wire spacing should be 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch. Cage Environment Multiple perches should be placed in the cage so they can fly from one to the other. You should also have swings, ladders or small hanging bells in the cage. Make sure with all the toys and perches that the cage does not become to cluttered so your finches still have space to fly. Most cages will come with water and feed dishes but in the event that it does not any kind of small dish will do the trick. When placing a dish of food or water on the bottom of the cage make sure it is not directly under a perch or the bird may poop in it. Other types of seed treats can be bought and clipped to the side of the cage as well. Humidity/Temperature 70-78° F (21-25° C) Clean Up Birds can be very messing animals and cages will need to be cleaned everyday. Most bird cages will come with a pull-out tray on the bottom for easy cleaning. The tray can be wiped off and placed back in. Food will need to be changed every couple days depending on if a bird pooped in it or got the food dirty and water should be changed everyday to ensure freshness. Grooming They will bathe themselves if you have a large flat water dish at the bottom of the cage. The water should be changed everyday so it stays fresh. Feeding
A standard finch mix can be bought at a pet store and will do just fine but they will also take egg food, veggies, fruits, bread crumbs, corn bread and soaked seeds. Stay away from spicy foods such as peppers and do not feed cabbage to you finch. Egg shells can also be fed to your bird and are a good source of calcium. If you have eggs for breakfast you can rinse the shell and microwave it to kill and bacteria like salmonella then give the egg shell to your bird. Cuttlebone can also be bought in store and should be provided for your bird to peck at to help sharpen their beaks.
Fruits and veggies for a spice finch:
- bell peppers
- butternut and other winter squashes
- collard greens
- corn on the cob
- dandelion greens
- honeydew melons
- mustard greens
- sweet potatoes
~All water should be free of chlorine and heavy metals!
Training Finches do not form bonds with humans easily and are more to just look at. Do not expect your finch to sit on your finger or shoulder but that does not mean it can't be done. To start training your zebra finch you must first allow him to get used to his new home and to you. Talk to your bird and sit near the cage so your bird knows your their but is not freaking out. Do not try and grab or touch him at first. That will only scare him and cause him not to trust you. Just get him used to having you near him. After a while he won't mind you being their and you can move closer to him. Once your finch is okay with you near the cage, open it up and stick your hand in the cage. Again do not try and touch your bird. Let him get used to your hand being near. It's a slow process and will be different for every bird. If your finch starts to freak out because you came to close then move away and stay at a distance that does not scare him. Stay quiet and calm. Exercise Finches should have a big enough cage where they can fly around to provide them with exercise. Health Problems Spice finches are generally healthy birds but signs of illness include; lethargy, loose stools, a head tucked under their wing, poor appetite, weight loss and discharge from eyes or nose. Keeping their cage, food and water fresh and avoiding harmful foods will ensure that your finch lives a long healthy life. Gestation Egg layer Poisonous to Spice Finches Avocado pits, raw onions, cabbage and seeds in most fruits and vegetables, with the exception of melons and squashes, can be toxic. Remove any seeds of fruit or veggies before feeding to your bird. Any processed food such as chips, pretzels, chocolate, granola bars etc.. should be avoided. Natural and unprocessed foods are the only foods that should be fed to your finch. Other Spice Finch Facts -
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