What do you feed a baby house finch

What Do House Finches Eat? (All You Need To Know)

What do house finches eat in the winter?

How often do house finches eat?

How much do house finches eat?

What do baby house finches eat?

What can I feed a house finch?

How do you attract house finches?

What do house finches drink?

What eats house finches?

What gives a house finch its color?

House Finch Diet FAQs

House finches (Haemorhous mexicanus) are small, beautiful birds native to the United States and now stretching as far as Hawaii. These fantastic small creatures have markings that make them easily distinguishable from other small birds. Male house finches have red markings on their belly and face, while females are light brown with dark streaks across their feathers.

House finches have a fascinating history, having been illegally sold on the East coast in the mid 20th century only to be released into the wild later on. These birds can be found across North America alongside humans, rarely if ever venturing into dense forests. So, what do house finches eat?

House finches have a diet that consists of primarily vegetables, fruit, seeds, buds, berries, and small flowers. They are also known to eat other smaller insects. Their preferred environment of chaparrals, cities, suburbs and semi-open areas has led them to have diverse diets. Like flamingos, house finches also have coloring that is affected by their diets!

House Finch feeding on sumac

Not only do house finches look in their natural habitats for natural food sources, like seeds, fruits, and berries, but they also get extra help from their human counterparts! Whether house finches are lurking for food in farmlands, shrubs, urban or suburban areas, they tend to also visit local food supplies offered by humans. This can include seed feeders and sugar water!

If you want to know how to attract house finches to your home, and want to know what to feed them to keep them healthy and happy, read on below! You can feed them during all seasons, however, their feeding behavior might be a bit different depending on the time of year.

What do house finches eat in the winter?

Studies have shown that house finches do not change their diets during the winter. Unlike other smaller birds that have to take in more significant amounts of food to put on weight for the winter, house finches can stay warm by simply changing their metabolic rate and increasing their temperature when it is needed.

During the winter, house finches will continue to eat their regular diet of seeds, wheat seeds, fruits, and insects. Seeds with a higher oil content are always preferred by house finches, with or without the winter. When the weather warms up and spring comes around, they will start ingesting flower buds and flower parts.

House Finch perched on a branch in winter

How often do house finches eat?

Like other wild birds, House finches tend to eat all day long from first morning light until dusk. Because house finches in the wild never know where their next meal will come from, they consume any food source as soon as they see it available. House finches tend to flock to feeders and stay nearby, feeding several times a day from them.

How much do house finches eat?

House finches, like other wild birds, can eat half of their body weight in food every day. House finches weigh between 0.67 to .078 ounces, meaning they can eat between 0.34 to 0.39 ounces of seeds and other food every day.

Female House Finch perched on the top of a spruce tree in Colorado

What do baby house finches eat?

Baby finches do not have beaks strong enough to break open seeds and be able to eat them properly. Thus, house finches only give their young mashed seeds that are easy for them to digest. Mashed vegetable matter can consist of weed seeds, sunflower seeds, dandelion seeds, and thistle.

If you're caring for a baby house finch on your own, you can make your own mix of small seeds smashed up with water or even an electrolyte solution. As the finch grows older, you can begin to feed them smashed up insects, much like their mothers also do in the wild.

Male and female house finches feeding their chicks in the nest

What can I feed a house finch?

House finches are not birds that enjoy cuddling, and they will more than likely not eat out of your hand. As such, it's best to simply leave food out for them to enjoy rather than try to hand feed adult house finches. You can feed house finches a variety of foods, including seeds from a birdfeeder, or leave out their favorite fruits such as sweet berries. Cotoneaster plants are also a favorite of house finches, as are various flower buds. Apple flower buds are a particular favorite of the house finch.

How do you attract house finches?

As we mentioned earlier, it's best to leave house finches food in your backyard rather than attempting to feed them by hand. You can attract house finches by leaving out large birdfeeders, such as a hanging tube or platform bird feeder, to give them an easy place to perch.

House finches can also be attracted by leaving out sugar-water, such as through a hummingbird feeder. You can plant shrubs that they enjoy, such as American elderberry, crabapple, and red mulberry shrubs. House finches can also be attracted to thistle shrubs, a favorite snack of theirs. For a more straightforward method of attracting finches besides planting new shrubs, install a birdbath that can allow them to have somewhere to cool off and drink water.

A pair of house finches at a feeder in the backyard

What do house finches drink?

House finches love to take baths and are attracted to birdbaths and shallow streams. However, if you're caring for a house finch due to it being sick or finding a younger bird, you can mix electrolyte solution, such as Pedialyte, with their bird feed. You can also feed them 100% fruit juices or place sugar water in a hummingbird feeder, which they will gladly enjoy.

What eats house finches?

House finches, unfortunately, have many natural predators. Large birds of prey such as hawks hunt and kill house finches. Nestlings and eggs can also fall prey to other wildlife. Even smaller birds such as blue jays, common grackles, and crows feast on eggs and young birds. Mammals such as squirrels, foxes, cats, chipmunks, snakes, and raccoons are all predators who eat house finches.

House Finch feeding on some red berries from a branch

What gives a house finch its color?

House finches, like flamingos, can range in color depending on their diet! Carotenoids, which are found in carrots, can give house finches anywhere from a subtle orange color to a deep, red color throughout their body. Carotenoids are also found in berries, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and squash.

Two male house finches with different colorings

House Finch Diet FAQs

Do house finches eat sunflower seeds?

House finches love sunflower seeds, especially black-oil sunflower seeds. Not only are black-oil sunflower seeds a favorite of house finches, but also of other wild birds. House finches also eat other smaller sunflower seeds, and feed mashed seeds to their young in the springtime.

Do house finches eat suet?

House finches are also known to eat suet when provided in suet cakes. Suet is the fat around the loins or kidneys in mutton and beef. Suet, when rendered down, can provide a valuable source of nutrition for house finches during the winter time.

Do house finches eat grape jelly?

You can safely feed house finches grape jelly so long as it is done during the morning hours. Grape jelly can replace sugar water, and low-sugar options can also be made available for your birds.

A group of house finches perched in a tree, during winter

Do house finches eat mealworms?

Mealworms don't make up a large portion of a house finches diet. However, they can still eat mealworms, especially dried mealworms that can be mixed in with their regular bird feed.

Do house finches eat bird seed?

House finches have a diet that consists of mainly bird seeds. House finches can eat seeds, including sunflower seeds, wild seeds from fruit, weed seeds, and grass seeds.

Do house finches eat fruit?

There are many fruits that house finches prefer, which are small and easily digestible. These include wild sweet berries, mulberry, cranberries, and wild cherries. They also enjoy crabapple fruit and elderberry fruit.

House finch feeding a juvenile

Do house finches eat grass?

House finches tend to forage on the ground from grass fields. They forage grass seeds, in addition to weed seeds too.

Do house finches eat worms?

Worms are easy prey for house finches, and they tend to eat worms during the spring months when they are abundant. They can also mash up small worms and feed them to their young.

Do house finches eat ants?

House finches have been known to eat ants. However, if given the opportunity, house finches prefer to munch on termites, beetles, and crickets.

Do house finches eat caterpillars?

Caterpillars and aphids are natural prey of house finches, who tend to eat them off of shrubs, plants, and even on trees. House finches, like other birds, can also eat earlier stages of a butterfly's life cycle. This includes eating butterfly eggs and larva.

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How to Care for House Finch Babies

By Nadelee Biondi | Updated September 26, 2017

Things You'll Need

  • Cage or box

  • Flannel or fleece fabric

  • Paper towels

  • Heat lamp or heating pad

  • Thermometer

  • Pre-made baby finch food

  • Pedialyte

  • Eye dropper or medication syringe

  • Bugs (crickets or mealworms)

  • Nest (can be a commercial finch nest)

  • Food and water bowls that attach to the cage bars

House finches are active but nervous birds. Their antics are fun to watch; however, unlike a parrot that can be held, a finch is not the right bird to have if the owner wants one that's loveable and playful. Finches don't enjoy cuddling -- although they're playful among themselves -- and holding them causes these birds stress. They make nests in pockets placed in the cage, and this is where finches will raise their young. Occasionally, when a parent dies or is unable to care for the baby, human intervention is needed. Though the babies are fragile, it is possible to raise them by hand until they can be introduced to other finches.

Find a box or cage that will protect the baby finch and give easy access to feed and care for it. Ensure the baby cannot escape before it's old enough to be placed in a cage with older finches.

Make a nest in the corner of the cage or box. It can be made of fleece or flannel fabric, and should have sides high enough so the baby cannot roll out of it. Cover the area for the baby finch with a folded paper towel.

Place the cage with the baby finch where the heat can be regulated. The baby must not get too hot or too cold. The temperature should be regulated between 88 and 92 degrees F. A heat lamp above the cage works well, as does a heating pad under it.

Put a thermometer in the cage between the nest and the wall of the cage. It will need to be continuously watched and the heat adjusted, until a steady temperature is finally achieved.

Purchase a ready-made seed mixture from a pet-supply or feed-supply store and a bottle of Pedialyte.

Set up a schedule for feeding the baby finch around the clock at timed intervals. Watch the crop in the baby's neck, as this tells when the baby's hungry; if it is flat, or puffed out, the baby finch is hungry and needs to be fed.

Mix the ready-made seed with the Pedialyte so that it's watery.

Feed the baby finch by filling an eyedropper with the ready-made seed mix. A syringe used to give human babies medicine will also work. Give the baby a little at a time, allowing the baby to take the food at its own pace. Baby finches do not breathe when they are feeding. Feed the baby small amounts at a time, allowing it to breathe in between. Do not overfeed the baby, as this could cause death.

Change the paper towel in the baby finch's nest before placing the baby back in it. The baby will probably fall fast asleep.

Mash up small bugs, occasionally mixing them with the seed mixture and sufficient quantities of water after the first two weeks of just feeding the seed mixture. Keep feeding the baby finch at regular intervals. Bugs provide perfect protein to keep the growing bird healthy. It's also okay at this point to start giving the baby water, small drops at a time, separate from the food -- although it's also okay to continue with Pedialyte.

Replace the homemade bird nest in the box with an actual finch nest, purchased from a pet store, in a cage. The baby finch is strong enough at this stage when it can stick its head out of the nest to let the caregiver know it's hungry. No matter what kind of directions a person is given for raising a baby bird, however, the chances of it surviving are slim if it is newly hatched. Remember though that even if it does not survive, it was held by your loving hands that tried.

Provide crushed birdseed in a bowl that attaches to the inside of the cage, along with a water container. At three weeks, the baby is large and agile enough to jump from the opening of the nest to the bowls and is now actively feeding and watering itself. It's okay to leave the baby in this cage for its lifetime.

Put the baby finch at five weeks of age into a cage with other finches. It is now old enough to be accepted and not picked on by the others. Keep its cage as it was for the time being, in case there are problems and it needs to be moved back into its first cage. It's okay to introduce another finch to the baby in the baby's cage as well.

  • Keep the baby finch's bedding clean at all times, replacing the paper towel as often as needed. Keep sudden noises to a minimum, as baby birds startle easily. Keep the cage and the baby in an area not accessible by children or other pets.


  • Do not overheat or underheat the baby finch, and do not force or over feed it -- as all of these conditions can cause the death of the baby finch.


  • AnimalAmigo.com: Caring for Baby Finches
  • AskDeb.com: What do You Feed a Baby Bird: Doug Brinlee
  • Birds n Ways: How to Handfeed Finches: Kristine Spencer
  • Bird Guys: How to Care for Finches
  • Animal-World: All About Finches
  • Beautiful Song Birds: Guide to Finch Care

Photo Credits

Writer Bio

Nadelee Biondi has been writing professionally since 2004. After receiving a Bachelor of Arts in English at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, she began contributing to "Sunset" and "Better Homes and Gardens." Biondi is also pursuing a Master of Arts in English literature.

How to feed a finch at home

The singing of a chaffinch remotely resembles a nightingale trill with specific overflows and chimes. Finches are sexually dimorphic, and males have brighter and more colorful plumage. The maintenance and breeding of finches in captivity is explained by sonorous singing and high plasticity to new habitat conditions. The main reason for the death of finches kept at home is improper feeding.

The natural habitat of finches is forests and artificial plantations (squares, parks, forest belts, gardens). This songbird is distributed throughout the European part of Russia, belongs to migratory birds.

The diet of the chaffinch differs according to the seasons. In early spring, the diet of birds consists of insect larvae and overwintered weed seeds, as well as young leaves and shoots. The finch often descends to the forest floor, to paths and edges in search of food. In summer, the male and female take care not only of their own food, but also of feeding the hatched chicks. For these purposes, protein foods begin to predominate in the diet: caterpillars, beetle larvae, bugs, hymenoptera, flies. During the nestling period, finches play an important role in protecting forests from insect pests. In autumn, the finch switches to plant food - seeds of weeds and cultivated plants. At the same time, preference is given to seeds with a high content of oils: cruciferous crops, hemp, flax, sunflower, nettle, poultry, etc.

When keeping finches in a cage, it is recommended to feed mainly grain. At the same time, it is desirable that the species composition of grain feed be diverse. Hemp and sunflower seeds must be included in the diet, but these components should not predominate, since finches with such feeding can have eye diseases and obesity. For flooded singing, insect food is added to the diet (meal worm, special mixtures). The presence of animal feed is also necessary when feeding chicks.

Despite the relatively modest food requirements, the diet of finches should be systematized and varied as much as possible. Finches, even when kept for a long time, will never become tame, so their cells are always covered with cloth, including when feeding. If it is possible to accustom the bird to the environment in daylight, then you should not rely on hand-feeding. At the slightest movement towards the cage, the finches lose their self-control and beat against the bars in a panic.

Under natural conditions, finches are very unpretentious and hardy birds, but they are not suitable for indoor keeping. Therefore, novice amateurs are not recommended to start them.

But there are people who can safely be called specialists, and they willingly keep these birds as excellent singers. In some cases, finches never get used to captivity, remaining wild for the rest of their lives. This is especially pronounced during the cleaning of the cage, when the bird is beating hard. But there are also individuals who eventually settle down and even become attached to their master.

In order to listen to the chaffinch's song more often, you should keep it alone. In order for him to better adapt to captivity, at first he must be constantly kept not in a cage, but in an aviary. The bird demonstrates its vocal talent all year round, with the exception of the molting period. The singing of finches is appreciated by many, even foreign lovers, who organize special competitions, during which up to 20 types of chaffin tunes are distinguished.

Finches are very mobile, smart and perky birds, but they love to fight among themselves. In the natural environment, males often arrange fights, defending their territory or protecting a nest with chicks from annoying neighbors. As soon as the owner of the nest hears the song of another finch coming from the vicinity of his possessions, he immediately rushes into battle. But some individuals get along great with other peaceful species of granivorous birds.

The fastest birds adapt to new conditions in a large outdoor aviary. When keeping several finches at once, they will be less pugnacious under such conditions and will quickly get used to the owner. For the nesting period, when the songs of the male become especially frequent, it is better to put him in a separate cage. The enclosure should contain a variety of perches and twigs, and if possible, shrubs and Christmas trees are planted in it. Both the aviary and the cage should be provided with a bath. For breeding, birds will need nesting material: blades of grass, thin twigs, moss, chopped woolen threads, etc.

The beak of the male during the mating season acquires a gray-blue tint. The female is in charge of building the nest. She lays 4-7 multi-colored eggs. Incubation lasts 11-13 days. The chicks hatch in 2 weeks.

In a pine grove, on a blue birch edge, in the depths of a dark coniferous spruce forest and on a thin forest overgrown with a thin forest, everywhere from April to August a ringing song-peal is heard, sometimes so iridescent and fading, sometimes absurdly loud and harsh.

Anyone who has been in the forest and has any interest in birds has seen the Chaffinch.

You are walking along a muddy spring road in a mixed forest. It's still early, gray snow, dotted with needles and twigs, lies in islands among melted lingonberries and burnt stumps. Silence. Only a timid slander of streams oozing along the road. Suddenly there was a ringing kick, and an elegant white-motley bird took off from the road. She sat down on a long pine bough and walked sideways along it. "Pink-pin-fin!"

She lets her closer. Wide white mirrors on the wings are clearly visible. The head of the bird is blue and the beak is blue, the breast is reddish, the upper tail is green. This is the beautiful forest finch.

The earliest date of arrival of finches to the Urals is the end of March, the latest is the twentieth of April. The finch always comes somehow suddenly. There was none yesterday. And today in the morning everywhere in the forest kicking, the roll call of flying flocks. Only elegant males fly.

Greyish females will appear a whole week later. In the meantime, the males take a fancy to nesting sites and begin to sing in a day or two. Spring in the Urals can be of any kind - sometimes unprecedentedly warm, friendly, green, sometimes long and cold. Clear hot days are suddenly replaced by cloudy gloom, drizzling rain, pouring grits. And the finches sing as if nothing had happened in the bare cold forest, heralding spring. Their singing is very different and different in different areas. Basically, it consists of a brisk long roll: “fuu-fuu-fuu, la-la-la-vic”. As a rarity, there are finches singing in two tones - major and minor. Then suddenly joyfully, loudly burst into the whole forest. Even shudder, stop. Oh, what is he doing, swindler! And it will already subside and suddenly ring out with a gentle stream, merge the same thing. Soul out, how good. Sometimes the finch does not sing, but makes a pleasant sad cry like: “rich, rich, rich, rummit.” Apparently, for this cry, the people called the bird a finch. Near the nest, the finch can chirp like a sparrow, in flight it emits a jerky “tek-tek ... ping”.

Catching a good chaffinch “by the voice”, as the birders say, is a rather tricky task. The listened bird must first be fed. Choose a place where this finch sings more often, rake up the forest floor and bait, sparing no food, and hemp, and seeds, and flour worms. Go back in a day or two and check. The finch will definitely find complementary foods, start flying on it and feed for a long time.

Sometimes you approach a place quietly, and he will fly off, hesitating: “I was here!” Then you can put up a net, mask it and a rope, better hide yourself and wait. Sometimes you wait half a day in vain, sometimes the next morning. But what a joy when he flies up, he always shouts before going down, and then dives down on a branch, sits above the very current, pulls up his tuft. "Pink, pink, pfin!" And to the current. Here even an experienced catcher is shaking. You can hardly wait until he comes closer to the network to cover for sure. And ... Here he jumps under the net. What a beautiful, bright, handsome forest fellow! Carefully seat him in a kuteika, and even better in a bag of rare fabric. Gather your gear and go home happy.

Catching a chaffinch with a lure is not always successful. A cautious forest songbird will never go straight to the current if he sees a cage. In such cases, the hiding place must be masked or placed away from the current. Chaffinches are caught in the spring both on the female and, like repolov, on nesting sites, but such fishing borders on poaching, and I have neither space nor desire to describe it.

Keeping finches in a cage is easy . They require a lean diet of a varied grain mix. In no case should you keep a bird on seeds or hemp.

The chaffinch eats them willingly and very soon (sometimes after a week) goes blind and dies. Blindness begins with the loss of feathers around the eyes. At first they fluff up, then the eyelids begin to get wet. The bird constantly scratches its head on the perch and thus worsens the condition of the eyes. Soon they turn into watery painful cracks and the finch dies. Eye disease is curable if caught at once. She progresses very quickly. It is necessary to abruptly change the food, removing all hemp and seeds from it. Lubricate the eyelids with a weak solution of potassium permanganate, give more greens, put currant jam in the drink.

If the cage with the finch hangs in the shade, it is transferred to a bright place, preferably in fresh air. The success of treatment is guaranteed if the disease has not gone too far.

In addition to the grain mixture, the chaffinch is given grated carrots, 1–2 flour worms, boiled potatoes in a small piece. He also likes white bread soaked in water or milk. In the summer, ant eggs and more greenery of the mosquito are added. The chaffinch's cage is ordinary, without a soft top. It should be borne in mind that this bird is wild, it does not get used soon - in a year and a half.

Cage singing sometimes begins in January and continues until July. Some good finches also sing in autumn, in September-October.

Chaffinch is a migratory bird. It nests twice during the summer and flies off in September, gathering in large flocks. Individual finches are delayed with departure until early November.

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Finch is a well-known small bird. She is very beautiful and sings melodic songs. Therefore, many people are thinking about the question of whether a finch can live at home. In this article, we will consider in detail the intricacies of the life of this bird in captivity, we will analyze what it should eat, what conditions must be created for it.


Description of the bird

Chaffinch is a songbird that belongs to the finches family. She is very bright and elegant, she does not tolerate cold at all, which is why she got such an interesting name.

Length From 14 to 18 centimeters.
Wingspan From 24 to 29 centimeters.
Weight 16 to 30 grams.
Plumage color Plumage includes brown, white, grey, blue and green. In autumn and winter, the color becomes dull, and in spring and summer, with the onset of the mating season, the birds become bright again. Birds are distinguished by a strong beak, a tail of sufficient length and powerful wings. Females are different from males, they are not so bright and beautiful.
Life expectancy In the wild, the bird lives from one to three years. When kept at home, a finch can live up to ten years.
Songbirds The chaffinch starts singing its songs approximately from spring to mid-summer, in the mating season. In autumn, the bird sings much quieter and less frequently. If the chaffinch lives at home, then its singing can be heard from January.
Table. Finch descriptionSinging finch

The usual type of finches flies quickly, moves on the ground by short jumps, he does not really like to walk.

The songs of this bird are notable for their loud sound, ringing trills, a bit reminiscent of nightingale ones. The chant lasts up to three seconds, then there is a pause, after which the singing resumes. Young birds sing very simply, while adults give out virtuoso melodies. A finch's repertoire can include up to ten melodies, which he loves to perform the most.

Interesting fact! Finches are able to predict rainy weather - before the rain they sing a special trill.

Where does such an unusual name come from?

To understand where this bird's name came from, you need to remember the saying that larks begin to sing when it gets warm, and finches start singing when frost sets in. The finch's trills end before winter in a rather peculiar way, as if the bird's throat had frozen sharply from frost and it could no longer continue singing.

Chaffinch before the onset of frost

In general, it is believed that the name of the bird came from the Russian word "chill", which means - to freeze.

Differences between males and females

As mentioned above, females are not as bright as males. The females of the chaffinch have brownish-gray feathers, occasionally white wedges can be found. The abdomen of the female is light, and the back, on the contrary, is dark. The beak of the female has a brownish-yellow tint.

As for the males, their plumage has many shades of green and blue. These birds have dark wings with white stripes, their back is brown, and their abdomen is beige. With the beginning of the mating season, in spring, the bird's beak becomes bluish, only its tip remains dark. By winter, the beak of the male finch looks slightly frozen - it acquires a shade of pinkish-brown.

A pair of finches

The most common types of finches

In total, eighteen species of finches are known in nature. On the territory of the Russian Federation and the CIS you can meet:

  • European chaffinch - the traditional variety described above;
  • Caucasian chaffinch - lives in the Crimea and the Caucasus, sings very beautifully;
  • Hyrcanian chaffinch - lives mainly in Northern Iran, on the shores of the Caspian Sea, has a reddish belly and a dark brown back;
  • Kopetdag chaffinch - distributed near the Turkmen reserve of the same name, has extensive white areas of feathers on the wings and tail.

On the territory of our country, you will most likely meet only the European variety of the chaffinch.

European chaffinch

Way of life

The chaffinch resembles a sparrow in many ways, it easily finds a common language with people, often neighbors them. The diet of this bird is unpretentious, for the winter (subject to a warm climate), the bird builds a strong nest for itself, which it diligently disguises.

Chaffinches can often be found at the stadium or in the city park. If the bird is worried, feels the approaching danger, it makes loud, sharp sounds that are repeated over a wide range of frequencies. The loud sound of such a chirp should make the enemy stop chasing the bird.

Sometimes finches do not want to show their excitement to everyone, then they squeak loudly, betraying anxiety. Such sounds resemble a thin, drawn-out whistle, it starts almost silently and ends with the gradual disappearance of the volume to zero. A bird can give similar signals to its fellow tribesmen in order to warn them of impending danger, but not to appear in front of a predator, not to give out its location.

Ermines are one of the main enemies of finches

Chaffinch is an unpretentious and hardy bird. Its main enemies are small predatory animals that love to destroy bird nests. Finches can be hunted by owls, woodpeckers, magpies, crows and jays.

In addition, the main enemies of finches are cats, ermines, squirrels and martens.

Where found in nature

Finches prefer to live in deciduous, coniferous or mixed forests. They do not like only the taiga, because it is quite difficult to get food on the ground there. It is not uncommon for a finch living in a summer cottage or garden plot.

What it eats

The basis of the diet of this bird is insects, in addition, the bird does not refuse weeds, fruits, berries.

Diet of finches

Finches actively hunt insects in spring, they feed on them throughout the summer, until the end of August. They really like small bugs, weevils. Finches rid tree plantations of these pests, which bring great benefits to the environment.

Migratory bird or not

Finches prefer to fly to warmer climes for the winter. Some varieties of these birds that live in an acceptable climate may stay over the winter. Most of the birds, with the onset of the first frosts, approximately at the beginning of October, set off on a long journey. They can fly to the central part of Europe, to the shores of the Mediterranean Sea. Some birds winter in the Caucasus, birds from Siberia prefer to winter in Central Asia, Kazakhstan.

The flight to wintering takes place with the participation of the whole flock, which can include up to a thousand individuals. Birds move south at a speed of more than fifty kilometers per hour. From wintering, finches return from February to April. First, males return to their place of residence, females catch up with them after about a week.

Flock of finches

Peculiarities of keeping finches at home

Finches at home – is it possible? These birds coexist well with humans, take root well in apartments and houses. But, it is impossible to say with certainty that the bird will definitely become tame. To achieve this, you will have to create a lot of conditions for the finch, have experience in keeping birds and be patient.

If the bird was caught as an adult, certain difficulties may arise with it. You will have to keep the finch in a cage covered with a cloth so as not to frighten him. Such birds, when a person appears, begin to express strong anxiety, beat against the bars of the cage.

If the bird was caught in the wild on its own, because of which it was injured, then it will not work to wait for melodic singing from the pet.

Cage, covered with cloth

Preparing the cage, drinkers and feeders

Keeping a finch at home involves preparing a suitable place for him to live. A cage for a finch will need not be too voluminous, with a height of about sixty centimeters, a width of fifty centimeters and a width of forty centimeters. The upper part of the cage should be made of cloth, and it is better to cover the cage itself with a cloth so that the bird is more comfortable inside. So, you will create for her an island of safety in which she will feel comfortable.

Place a bowl of water and a feeder in the bird cage. It does not hurt to fix perches inside the cage on which the bird can sit and a house where it can hide.

At the bottom of the cage, sand can be poured, which must first be sieved and calcined to get rid of parasites in it.

Dry sand for bedding

Puts the cage with the bird in a place that is well lit, regularly ventilated. But, the presence of drafts is not acceptable. You need to clean the inside of the cage on a regular basis. General cleaning should be carried out weekly with mandatory disinfection of all surfaces and subsequent airing of the cage in the fresh air.

Nest materials or bedding

As we noted above, sifted sand should be poured inside the cage, it will act as bedding.

In order for the birds to make their own nest, you need to prepare materials at hand for them. It can be tree branches, lichen, moss, pieces of tree bark, cobwebs, wool, hair.

Diet and feeding schedule

How to feed a finch at home? This bird is not particularly picky either in living conditions or in the diet.

Poppy seeds

What can be fed to a chaffinch:

  • millet - you can combine several species, check what the bird will like and choose the optimal composition;
  • some oil to reduce the pet's susceptibility to cold;
  • sunflower seeds, rapeseed, oat and poppy seeds - will increase the energy of birds, which is especially important during the mating season;
  • germinated seeds - just do not mix them with dry ones, this will quickly spoil both types;
  • grated carrots, boiled potatoes;
  • white bread soaked in milk or water;
  • ant eggs;
  • woodweed greens.

Chaffinch food should not remain in the feeder for a long time, it must be changed to a new one in a timely manner.

In order for the birds to sing more actively, it is necessary to increase the number of insects in the diet. It can be flour worms, special mixtures. Insects are required when the birds have hatched and begin to accustom the chicks to adult food.

Boiled potatoes for feeding finches

Do not constantly feed the bird with sunflower and hemp seeds. These products should be given in minimal quantities, only as part of a mixture with other grains. Otherwise, the bird may get sick, blind and die. If you notice signs of anxiety in a pet, you see that he constantly scratches his head on the bars of the cage, and his eyes begin to water, you need to drastically remove these foods from the diet. After that, it is important to wipe the finch's eyes with a weak solution of potassium permanganate, increase the amount of greens in the daily diet, add a little currant jam to the drinker.

Basic hygiene procedures

In order for the bird to bathe whenever it wants, to keep its plumage clean, it is necessary to put a container of water in the cage. Its contents should be changed regularly to avoid the multiplication of pathogens inside.

Do finches breed in captivity?

Finches can breed if kept at home, in a cage, under the right conditions for them.

Finch nest

What you need:

  • a small box with a nest;
  • improvised nest materials - moss, lichen, twigs, tree bark, wool;
  • bring the male and female into one cage.

How will birds breed? First, the birds will begin to build a nest, it will take them about a week. After mating, the female will lay eggs in the nest, there can be from four to seven. Finch eggs are multi-colored, the female will incubate them for 11-13 days.

It should be noted that all the time while the female is incubating the eggs, the male sings melodic songs. Newborn chicks squeak amusingly, whistle, their skin is covered with a rare fluff, it is wrinkled and red.

The chicks begin to fly out of the nest on their own about 14 days after hatching from the egg. To feed them, you need to offer the birds small larvae and other insects. Food rich in protein will speed up the growth of finch chicks.

Finch chick

Males guard the nest with the female and chicks very seriously. When danger appears, they immediately stand up to protect their family.

Interesting fact! The male chaffinch may participate in feeding foreign chicks.

After the first spring/summer egg laying, finches may lay another clutch. This does not happen before the end of summer. This time the female lays no more than three or four eggs. It should be noted that in order to incubate new offspring, the male builds a new nest for the female.

How to tame a bird?

It is not easy to tame a finch, if a pet was born in a cage, then it can get used to a person. If he was caught already as an adult, then it will be very difficult to tame him. Most likely, when a person appears, the bird will beat against the bars of the cage, trying to hide.

Tamed Chaffinch

In order for the bird to become accustomed to its owner, it must be kept in a cage upholstered with cloth for a long time, where the pet will feel relatively safe.

Finches can live in a cage with other birds, but they do not always do it with great pleasure. If the bird has a cocky character, then the meeting of two male finch can end in a fight.

Owner's feedback on keeping finches at home

The chaffinch at home is a bird that needs attention. She is not often seen in the apartment.

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