Breeding Zebra Finches

Zebra finches make excellent parents, you just need to follow a few steps to make breeding a rewarding experience for all. This is a guide about breeding Zebra finches.

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Pair of Zebra Finches on Perch
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I got 1 couple of Zebra finches (male and female) about 4 months ago. I had a small cage at first, but then after reading more about them, I bought them a big one and they were happy with it. That's when they started mating and the female would lay eggs about everyday into the food container and sit in it. I did not want them to nest and that's why I did not get them a nest, so I would throw the egg away, but as soon as the next day there would be another egg. This lasted for about 2 months with an average of 3 eggs per week. Now that has dropped to about 1 a week. The female stopped moving like before. She would sit in the food container all day with just a couple of minutes of exercise in the morning, but staying still in the food container all day. I try to scare her sometimes to come out, but she would go back in right after that. What seems to be the problem?

    AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

    I think she is depressed.

    If you don't want birds to reproduce, do not get a male and female. It is natural for them to do this.

    Your female bird should get along with other females. Will the pet store let you exchange your male for a female bird? The male would rather be with a female that is allowed to mate, and I'm sure the female would rather not prepare to care for babies that never appear.

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    ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

    I have two zebra finches. I actually want them to lay eggs. Yesterday I saw that the female layed an egg by sitting on one of the perches. The egg fell down and broke. She hadn't made a nest yet. Is there any way to make them lay eggs in the nest which I have brought for them. I have also put some dried leaves in it.

      AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

      Give them nesting materials, which consists of short pieces of yarn (NOT thin string or thread) cut into about 2 to 3 inch pieces. Also you can use very little scraps of cotton material. Don't put anything in the nest. They want to do it themselves.

      It is possible the nest is not up to her standards.

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      ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

      I have had a pair of zebra finches since they were young chicks. I have been trying to breed them for a while now. They are from different families as the female is pure black cheek and the male is chestnut cheeked.

      They mate regularly and frequently. Their nest is pretty much complete. But why isn't she laying any eggs? I give them as much healthy food as I can, such as lettuce, broccoli, tomatoes, peppers, and fruits like oranges and apples. They have plenty of fresh water every day. Their food is checked constantly so they don't starve.

      I do have another pair in the cage too; the cage itself could hold up to 20 finches. Can you help me please?

        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        Thank you I will try this :-)

        ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
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        Millie (Zebra Finch)

        Your Pet's Age
        a week old or a few days

        Your Pet's Breed
        Zebra Finch

        How and when did you get your pet?
        The parents I got for free with the snake and mice/rat protected aviary and she or he is my first ever baby that has hatched from an egg, the one and only egg.

        Do you have anything else to share about your pet?
        Even since I saw it's head poke out of the nest, I have been so protective and loving to it since. As it is the first baby finch hatched from its egg and I'm only a teenager, I feel so happy and will never let it out of my sight and care for it forever.

        CommentMoreRead More...Was this helpful?Helpful? Yes

        Recently I had a couple of finches, a male and female couple, who had two male chicks. They were on their second hatch when one day I came home from camping and three were dead. The chicks some how survived, but the only adult left was one of the young males. He seems to be trying to take care of the chicks by sitting on them and feeding them, but I don't think he's can do this by himself. If I buy him a mate do you think she will help him take care of the chicks?

          AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

          A new mate would only distract the young male with "other thoughts." I wouldn't try to hand raise them if you know little about it. They are very tiny and easy to injure. It is possible one or two of the babies will still survive since your bird seems to have the instincts needed.

          In the future, separate the nesting pair from the rest as petlover said, and be sure to maintain a constant temperature in the house while you are gone. Also, if you are gone more than a day hire a pet sitter to change food and water.

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          I bought my husband a male zebra finch about 6-8 months ago. 2 weeks ago he bought a female (about 2 months) last week. They were so happy to discover each other and started to groom each other right away. I saw them mating after 2 days. I gave them some free flying time and they were desparate to find some nesting material. I provided then an empty food container and they were trying to take dry plant leaves there, but each time the male pulled any dry plant leaf, he took it with his beak and set it on the top of the nest, but doesn't put it on the floor of the nest. The female seems to be upset with this. Can I do something to help them out? Also I don't have that much dried plant leaves at my home, what else I can provide them?

          Honestly I am not desperate to encourage them to have babies, but it's kinda cool to see they are trying to make their own nest that's why I want them to continue their initiative.

          finch
            AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

            Sorry I didn't see your comment.

            By now you've learned if your female was ready to lay an egg.

            A truly sick bird will stop eating and grooming, so I don't think there's anything wrong with your bird. Fluffing up and going in and out of the nest does sound like preparing to lay.

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            I have recently bought a female zebra finch and I have a 10 year old male white zebra finch. He is completely white with no zebra stripes on the tail and no tear drop. I am wondering how long do I need to keep them in separate cages, so that they get to know each other before I join them together. Can someone explain to me the steps that I need to do so that I can keep them together without them fighting.

            Also a strange thing happened, I've put the male inside the female's cage since the male is not freaking out and is tamed and she freaked out and landed next to him. He kinda picked her a few times with his beak and I seperated them quickly. I was not sure if they were fighting or what. She didn't freak out when he did that, she just stood there. Can someone explain what he was doing and the steps? Thanks in advance.

              AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

              Hi,

              I believe it was not picking rather showing interest and approaching her for courship.

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              What do I do if my pair of zebra finches laid their eggs in two different nests?

                AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                Remove the egg from the other nest box. Place it with the other eggs in the other nest box. Then remove the nest box so there is only the one. Or if you have many birds & many nest boxes , separate the pair you want to breed & place them in a large cage with a nest box.

                ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                I bought a large aviary for my zebra finches. I have one couple with babies that are close to 2 weeks old and another couple that are sitting on eggs. Can I move these couples to their new aviary, they are in smaller cages right now, or should I wait until babies are out of the nest?

                By Diana P.

                AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
                Best Answer

                Definitely wait. If you move them now, the parents may freak out and stop caring for them.

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                My finches had five babies and I just noticed that they threw out one of them and it was dead on the bottom of the cage. I am so nervous they won't care for the others now. What can I do? Anything?

                By Aliesha

                AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
                Best Answer

                Five babies is quite a large clutch for finches. I would guess the baby fell out rather than was 'thrown' out. The main thing the parents need is high fat content food to feed the babies. Meal worms work & can be purchased at most pet stores. Otherwise a couple of smashed hard boiled eggs will be good for them w/ the protein & fat {w/ the shells for calcium}. Curious what variety of finches you have. I used to work for an Aviary company & had many breeds in my care! Hope this is helpful & sometimes just gotta let nature run it's course. Best wishes.

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                I just put a male finch in the cage with my female and they seem to be getting along good. I noticed that my female finch was grooming my male, that does that mean they are they going to breed?

                  AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                  Thx guys they I saw them mate so thx for helping me out.

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                  I have had two finches for about 3 months. When I first got them I noticed they were the only ones snuggled up to each other. Just today I noticed that one had laid an egg, but it fell to the bottom of the cage. I have no way of telling which finch is the female or male they are both white zebra finches.

                  My sister did see one of them dance and flop their feathers at the other trying to get on top, the one that laid the egg was the one trying to get on top. It was also cuddling with the other one. The one that was on top has a beak that is darker, but it gives off a lot of female ways.

                  The other one that is the partner (I think) regected the first one and is also helping to prepare a nest. So my question is, if it's a female or a male? When a couple is ready to nest do both the female and male finch sit in the nest or do only the females? Please help me if you understand my situation. I would appreciate it very so much.
                  Thank you.

                    AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                    You can tell if they are male and female by looking at their beak and their legs , males have a strong red colored beak and the matching legs , while the female will have a more orange/red beak with brighter orange legs..

                    Also the males can also sing , beep and make more types of sounds while the female can beep and beep even faster ^_^

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                    I have a nest high up in the corner and it is full of hay that my female zebra finch goes in. The male doesn't go in the nest, only the female does. The male sleeps on top of the nest. They still haven't bred, but why doesn't he go in the nest with the female? This is my first time breeding zebra finches.

                    Plz help.

                      AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                      The female zebra finch put the material herself and yes it's nesting material and no I don't know how old they are but when I got my female finch he laid a egg so I am guessing she is old enough and the male is about a year or so.

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                      My zebra finch can't go in the nest. What can I do?

                        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                        can't or won't ?

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                        I have two zebra finches and I know that I have a male and a female. I discovered an egg today so I got a nest for them. I looked at websites about nesting material, but it didn't say if I could put in the nesting material myself or if my finches need to do that. So my question is do I put in nesting material myself or set the material in the cage and let them add in material themselves?

                        By Sandy G.

                        AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
                        Best Answer

                        Put it in the cage in sort of a loose netting, like onion netting. They enjoy pulling out the individual pieces and will make the nest themselves.

                        ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                        We have two Zebra finches. We noticed one egg on 11th January and both parents were sitting on it until 25th of the month; we didn't move the cage. The female didn't have a bath during this period, but the male did. Once in a while the male was arranging the nest, so we put some cotton to the cage on 25th. They both took cotton very quickly and put it in the nest. They quickly finished arranging all of the cotton in the nest and were sitting on it. Soon we found that they had covered the eggs with cotton, buried them.

                        What should we do now? Should we take the eggs out? It's almost 14 days now.
                        A few times we saw eggs, but never hatched them before. Please reply as soon as possible as we all, at home, love them.

                          AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                          Give them 16 days from the time the last egg was laid. Assume one egg was laid per day.

                          ReplyWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes

                          I have 2 zebra finches. They just finished raising chicks and I just found out they have 4 new eggs. I know they're not supposed to lay more than 3 clutches a year so should I take them out, seperate the pair, or keep them there? If so should I remove the babies now that they are fledged, but not fully for sure. Please help asap I'm pretty worried; it's my first pair. Thanks so much.

                            AnswerWas this helpful?Helpful? Yes
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                            Pets BirdsMarch 29, 2012
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