Male zebra finch losing feathers in neck??

Discussion in 'Behavior Byway' started by stephenswife2012, 4/28/13.

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  1. stephenswife2012
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    stephenswife2012 Moving in

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    We have a large indoor aviary that was housing 3 male zebra finches and a breeding pair of doves. Well, 2 of our finches took an interest in the dove nest and would spend a bit of time in it throughout the day so when our doves laid an egg (infertile) I decided to get all 3 of our finches their own nest... 2 of them took interest in it and the 3rd finch didn't want anything to do with it...

    My question is... Our 2 male finches have been nesting together in both separate and conjoined huts that we provided, while feeding them and watering them, my hubby noticed today that one of the finches was missing alot of the feathers in his back of the neck... I didn't notice it at first from the angle he was at but when the finch came straight in front of me, I saw it :(

    It seems as if 2 of our finches are ready to mate (don't have females yet) but the 3rd isn't ready... Could he be younger than the other 2? Does it seem like the others who are nesting are likely plucking his feathers out in his neck? (I ask that because I have seen them in the doves nest digging for feathers and then going back to the nests with a feather in each of their mouths that the doves had used in their nest.) We were worried it may be mites but the other birds aren't losing feathers and theres no bugs or anything that we see on him or in the cage.

    We did separate the little finch in his own cage for the time being to see if his condition gets better and probably won't be putting him back in the group until we get females for the others... Just wondering what I can do to get his feathers to grow back...I believe they will as I can see little spots on his neck where it looks like they are trying to come back in...Any ideas to help him recover??
  2. Bokkapooh
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    Bokkapooh Joyriding the Neighborhood

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    Sounds like the pair is picking on the lone male. This is why its important to have several pairs at a time in a cage or aviary.

    How big is your aviary?
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  3. stephenswife2012
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    stephenswife2012 Moving in

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    Its a large aviary, its 84" tall, 37" long, 24" wide. We kept the males together as they got along just fine together at the petstore and up until recently so we think our other 2 are ready to breed but the lone one is a little too young still.
  4. Bokkapooh
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    Bokkapooh Joyriding the Neighborhood

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    37" L and 24" wide is actually pretty small. It'll need to be longer for them to get along.
  5. stephenswife2012
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    stephenswife2012 Moving in

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    The doves and the finches leave each other alone, its just the 2 males picking on the 3rd male. We plan on making it larger and actually putting an outdoor aviary together for them to be in while we are out.
  6. Anne & Gang
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    Anne & Gang Ripping up the road Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award

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    definitely the third one is being plucked at and picked on as he is the odd man o ut..they dont do well in odd situations like that ..keep him separate until you can find him a mate
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  7. stephenswife2012
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    stephenswife2012 Moving in

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    Thanks for the advice Anne & Gang, I planned on finding the first 2 males mates soon but will likely wait to get the 3rd one a mate until his feathers have regrown properly which hopefully wont be too long, gave him crushed egg shells and boiled egg yesterday so hoping that will help...
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  8. Anne & Gang
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    Anne & Gang Ripping up the road Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award

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    Did you know that finches love scrambled eggs? I make mine simply...break in dish. stir..pop in microwave for 30 seconds or so, stir again. nuke for another 30 seconds..make sure they are cooled..You can mush them up and offer..they do like warm but make sure the centers are not hot (microwaved foods often have hot centers)..OUr little finch also used to love love love broccoli..You can either shred it up or stick a whole broccoli in the cage bars..and they will pick at it all day..amazingly good for them...be careful with the crushed up egg shells..sometimes those can pierce stomach linings..You are better off offerring egg food, scrambled eggs or even a calci supplement if you feel you have to.
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  9. Bokkapooh
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    Bokkapooh Joyriding the Neighborhood

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    You can cut up herbs and romaine lettuce and carrots and mix it into the egg mix before cooking. It makes it a very healthy meal for a finch:)
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