first year parent gouldians not feeding the babies once they fledge
Hi I was hoping to get some insight to a problem I have had with my gouldian finches. I am very new with this and started with a pair of 1 yr old finches. They bred for the first time and 3 out of 6 survived. My finches bred again after that and 5 out of 6 survived! They then bred a third time and none survived :( They were breeding and laying eggs with the babies still in the nest box. The second the babies fledged they stopped feeding them all. After loosing all the babies on the 3rd round of breeding I left the eggs in and ended up with 3 hatching out of 6. The parents repeated the same pattern of laying eggs with the babies so this time I pulled the eggs out and tossed them each day from the nest box which housed the 3 babies. 2 babies died in the nest box and 1 fledged. As soon as it fledged I pulled the nest box and the parents stopped feeding it and it died as well. It really upsets me every time a bird dies. I have tried to hand feed them and save them all, but have not had any success yet.
I have to be doing something wrong. OR I could do something different and learn from this experience so history does not repeat itself. My birds are in a large flight cage inside. I provide all the correct vitamins, food etc. I have researched it through and through and know I am doing that part right :) I am hoping to gather your thoughts and learn from this. Any advice or tips would be greatly appreciated. There is no nest box at this time and I am letting them save there energy to go into molt.
I have to tell you I have never heard of or had any experience like you have been through. Certainly you are doing all that is needed for the parent birds or there would not be any chicks in the first place. I hope someone else will read your question and be more help to you than I can be. I cannot imagine tender caring parent Gouldians just letting their chicks starve. Something has to be wrong that is causing the birds to lay eggs too soon. They should be feeding their chicks for about two weeks after they have fledged and after that start another clutch. I do not know how to change their behavior, but I know I would get maybe six Society finches and set them up with nest boxes in three cages in order to have three pairs to care for three broods. It doesn't matter what the sexes are. Both male and female Societies will care for the eggs and chicks and you don't want their eggs anyway. The Societies will get in their nest boxes for the night in the early evening every day. Mine turn in around 5:00PM, so after your Gouldian has layed her full clutch, pull the eggs and put them in the Societies' nest box just before they get in for the night. I know this isn't what you had hoped for and I know you probably don't want the Societies. I didn't want to foster either. Sometimes Gouldians just can't be adequate parents. Care for the Society finches just as you have cared for the Goulds. You are not doing anything wrong. One good thing about Society finches beside how kind they are is that they do not require such a large cage. Sorry I cannot be of more help, Jeanie