A classic scenario of one species appearing to be 'safe' but...
All (most), of the 2006 successes were due to one breeder. Then, he, Richard Prosser emigrated.
Look at what happened in 2007!
Thanks to the WFS for permission to reproduce their records.
Records for more Waxbill species can be found at
Ist time lucky
First pair to nest were totally tolerant. Sat happily in secluded compartment
through their bob-hole while I inspected.
But, were very light sitters. A 3-day youngster accidently dragged and dropped from the
nest. Warmed by blowing on in cupped hands and popped back into nest. Parents were totally unfazed.
? Well, this pair did,
for this round! Four eggs, 1 dead in shell, smallest died at 14 days (think fed
too few Pinkies at the start).
Two fledged, beautiful (cock youngster on the right.). Parents back on five eggs still
with independent youngsters (hmmm - seemed to easy, and it was).
Foster or parent rear?
From the above you could think parent-rearing is the answer. This pair certainly
This same pair went on to lay various clutches, some in the nest, some on the floor.
Sometimes they sat for a few days, had a day or two off, then re-sat. They became
the lightest sitters I have ever known.
The eggs were invariably useless by the time I inspected and found a clutch. Yet the husbandry
was identical to when they had a successful round.
A second pair laid several fertile eggs but failed to hatched any.
A third pair laid 5 eggs then failed to sit. By the time I found them they were useless
Admittedly these were wild caught birds but they were very unreliable parents
For me, fostering is the only way to proceed to get numbers up. Then try parent-rearing with the domestics.
As domestics are
the only birds available these days, breeding in cages is probably much easier.
Interested in Blue-Capped Waxbills? Photos of chick development plua recipe for Paul de Nil's rearing
Interested in parrot finches? This site covers Pintailed, Blue-faced, Red-headed and Forbes parrot
Are you a member of The Waxbill Finch Society? An excellent Society for advice, booklets and videos.
Live in the UK? Interested in helping wildlife? This site deals with creating
a wildlife-friendly garden.
Birds and snorkelling photography? Both are great fun. Holiday places, info.
on cameras and snorkelling.
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