In most species, the bond between parents and their offspring is strong. Most parents nurture and safeguard the lives of their newborns.
However, in reptiles, some species abandon the nest before the eggs begin to hatch.
They do this to avoid their natural predatory instincts; that is, to avoid eating their hatchlings.
So, you may wonder if it is prevalent in birds or whether finches kill their babies?
No. Finches do not kill their babies. Sometimes, first-time parents may make a mistake that may harm the offspring. However, both parent finches tend to nurture and protect their babies. It will be best to move the breeding parents to another cage to provide safety for both parents and hatchlings.
Now you know, both the father and mother finch protect and nurture their babies. But what happens if the baby dies in the nest?
Let us find out what parent finches do with the dead body. Will they push it out of the nest or eat the dead body?
Do Finches Eat Their Babies?
As we have discussed in the earlier section, parent finches take good care of their young ones and do not kill their babies.
Most parent birds will either push the dead chick out of the nest or consume the dead body to protect the nest from predators.
Similarly, in the wild, finches may also push the dead body out of the nest or consume it to safeguard the surviving chicks from predators.
In captivity, where there is no threat of natural predators, parent finches may leave the dead body lying at the bottom of the finch cage.
Alright! So, finches do not kill and eat babies for shortage of food. They may eat the dead body to keep predators at bay. Let’s also try to understand reasons behind death among young finch chicks.
Why Do Baby Finches Die?
Well, after hatching from the egg, you may find your baby finches doing well. Suddenly, to see them dead on the cage floor may surprise you.
You may not have observed any visible signs of illness and wonder about their cause of death.
Let us examine some of the reasons that may have led to your young finch’s death.
- Lack of Space: As we all know; finches need adequate space to fly around the cage. Unlike, some pet birds, they do not walk around or climb inside the cage. Finches may hop or fly to move from one part of the cage to another. If you keep them together in a small space, they will fight and kill the little chicks living in the same cage.
- Inadequate Food: If the food supply is insufficient, the cage mates will fight with each other. It can be another reason why the young chick may be killed or starved for food shortage.
- Infection: If the young chick has caught an infection, the parent finch will try to kill it to avoid transmission to other healthy chicks. Finches usually do not care for a sick hatchling and tend towards other healthy babies.
- Birth Abnormality: At times, young hatchlings are born with some deformed condition. In such situation, parent finches do not raise such offspring and will either abandon or kill them.
- Mating Urge: It sometimes happen that the male finch may enter the breeding season early and have mating urge, while the female finch may not be receptive. It can lead to aggressive behavior in the male, which may be dangerous for both the female finch and the young ones.
So, now you know some of the reasons that can potentially cause a young chick’s death.
At the same time, let us also explore how to deal with these problems and create safe living conditions for your baby finches.
Related Further Reading:
- Do Finches Have Ears? (Do Finches Have Good Hearing)
- Do Finches Like Music? + Are Finches Happy When They Sing?
- Do Zebra Finches Smell Bad? + Are Zebra Finches Messy Birds?
- Do Finches Have Good Eyesight? (Do Finches Have Good Vision At Night?)
- Do Finches Sleep At Night? + Are They Diurnal Birds?
How To Create Safe Living Conditions For Baby Finches?
Healthy and safe living conditions are paramount for babies to grow and flourish. Parent finches raise their babies well, but as pet owners, you should be aware of certain necessary things.
You may ensure their safety by making a few changes for your pet finches during the initial stages of newborns.
Let us look into how you can create safe living conditions for your pet finches.
- Move breeding finches: It is best to move breeding parent finches to another cage. It ensures the parents and young chicks have enough space for them. It also removes the danger of any attack from other finch pairs. In absence of a separate cage, you may create a partition inside the cage for new parents.
- Nutritious Diet: A steady supply of healthy food will ensure the excellent health of parent finches and their offspring. You may give them seeds, fruits, and worms, depending on the season and availability.
- Avian Visit: Keep a close eye on the development of your newborns. If you notice any physical abnormality or weakness in any offspring compared to others, you should make an avian visit to check for any infection or other health issues.
- Juvenile Stage: After 5 to 6 weeks, baby finches start developing adult coloration and feather patterns. After six weeks, you may now separate the baby finches from their parents and move them to a separate cage.
Apart from providing safe living conditions, it is crucial that finches get a balanced nutritious diet. For finch food, you can check out these products on Amazon.
You may use the above points as guidelines to ensure well-being of your newborn and parent finches.
However, as per owners, you should be vigilant to track any suspicious behavior between both parent finches and babies. If required, it is always safe to move either of them to a separate cage.
Alright! Making subtle changes to the finch cage or their living conditions will ensure no threat to the young finches and their parent’s well-being.
Recommended Further Reading:
- Do Finches Attack Humans? + How To Handle A Finch’s Aggression?
- Do Finches Recognize Their Owners? (Do Finches Feel Attached To Their Owners)
- Do Finches Feed Their Babies? (How Long Can Babies Live Without Food?)
- Are Finches Affectionate? + Do They Like To Be Handled By Humans?
- Do Finches Need To Be Covered At Night (Reasons For Not Covering)
- Do Zebra Finches Mate For Life? + What If It Loses Its Mate?
Finches make good parents as they take proper care of their young ones.
However, other things, such as living conditions, space, and cage mates, may directly impact the well-being of the offspring.
As a responsible pet owner, you have to create a harmonious living environment conducive to your pet finches and their newborn’s growth and safety.