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Introduction of a New Bird

Posted by fetchingfinchesaviary@gmail.com on January 14, 2015 at 5:00 AM

Consider thee steps when integrating a new finch into an existing community:

Zebs make up for their small stature by being slightly territorial (yet at the same time social) and work well in community cages provided their is ample space. Introducing a new bird to the community can disturb the social order and the new bird can be met with aggression. There are a few steps to prevent this:

1. BUDDY SYSTEM: It is good practice to introduce new birds in pairs if possible.

2. INTORDUCTION BEFORE ORIENTATION. Place the new bird(s) in a small cage next to the large cage so they may become accustomed to eachother for 3 days.

My birds leave the aviary healthy, but could be exposed to disease upon travel (especially internationally). Quarantine can be as simple as leaving the birds in a separate cage for 2-4 weeks before integration. Under this time in a separate enclosure, I add in suppliments and medication if needed. Having the bird initially separated also reduces stress.


3. REPOSTITION ITEMS in the cage (nests, perches, etc), so they can define new territories.

4. INCREASE RESOURCES. Provide an extra seed container, extra spray of millet on opposite sides of the cage, and add a variety of things to peck and chew: a big leaf of lettuce, palm fronds or new fruit choices (served in half on the bottom of the cage to devour).

5. BEHAVIOR: It is to be expected that there be a slight anamosity amongst the group in the beginning, but it should subside within a few days.My birds are known to have a flawless integration as they have been bred to understand and work well with other species and environments.

Once the new finch is in the enclosure- be sure to monitor them. If there are subtle signs of aggression this should subside in a weeks time:


Mounting: dominance behavior


Beaking: pecking at face (can be a problem if it continues)


Chasing: to chase one or another


Aggression should stop within the first week. If the aggression should escalate to plucking or any other type of physical damage you will need to separate the pair. You can try to reintroduce them again in a weeks time (leaving their cages next to each other).


Cohabitation: Positive is if the pair sits next to one another on a perch.



If aggression does not resolve iteself, or is causing harm to one or more of the birds, the aggressor should be removed from the enclosure and place in a quarentine cage. You should try an integrate the aggressor after 5 days time (without repositioning cage elements) as this changes the 'pecking order' and will allow cohabitation.

If you are integrating a different breed of finches (zebras and javas, or societies and zebras) the same rules apply.


Categories: Your New Finch