Determining sex in gouldian finches

by melissa
(florida)

What is the best way to sex your gouldian finches? Is it only bassed on the vibrance of the colors on the cock as compared to the hen? Thanks. P.S You also mentioned in your 12 steps that geography changes some of the specifics and timing of preparing them for breeding. Is this due to temp. changes?


Hi Melissa,

The vivid colors of the green back Gouldian males', heads and purple breasts, when compared to the faded purple breasts and the presence of black feathers around and within the smaller red or yellow head females make it easy to tell what sex the bird is, but it is not so simple when trying to sex some of the other mutations. The behaviour of the males when it is time for courting is an unmistakable sex separater. The males hop and sing and the females do neither. The females will lower their heads and quiver their tail feathers when accepting a male as a partner.

Temperature is part of what gets a pair into a breeding cycle. At the same time the U.S. has fall, the Australian country side is having spring. Our domesticated Gouldians have not accepted our spring as their new breeding period. They still want to breed in the Australian spring months,(Sept., Oct. and Nov.), so we have to create their spring to begin usually following a molt. Studies have shown that the most successful breeding time for Goulds in the U.S. is the fall, but often the completion of a molt at a different time will lead to their desire to breed. I would raise my birds in Maryland, so I had to create an artifical spring for my birds. I would increase the temperature to the high 70' or low 80's where the nest box and cage sit. I would increase their sunlight hours to 14 hours each day and I would increase the amount of protein and greens they received. All of this tells the Gouldians that it is now safe to start breeding. The birds seem to know that they have enough of what they need to provide for their chicks and start breeding.

Hope this helps, Jeanie

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