Nutritional


  • A top quality seed blend created for the SPECIES you are keeping. No species will eat exactly the same seed mix. It is your responsibility to research and discover what seeds your birds should be eating, or if you keep softbills, which foods they can and cannot have. Here, we need seed mixes for each of the 4 seasons of the Australian finches we breed, an African seed blend hand-adjusted for the various species, an Asian blend that contains slightly larger seeds for our Munias.
  • A top quality VITAMIN SUPPLEMENT such as Dufo Plus usually given 1 or 2x per week (per schedule) year round - always read the directions on your supplements. They will be different  depending on manufacturer.
  • A top quality IODINE SUPPLEMENT - whether stand alone or combined with CALCIUM such as Dr. Rob Marshall's Ioford.
  • A top quality CALCIUM SUPPLEMENT - this should be a stand alone product that can be given in case of egg binding or when birds are sitting low on the perch or having trouble passing eggs.
  • A top quality MINERAL GRIT MIX - that contains BOTH soluble and insoluble forms of calcium grit plus essential minerals and a TINY amount of charcoal such as our MLFAS, Inc. Gould-Granules (made for all passerines).


As always, I don't care which BRAND/MANUFACTURER you use as long as you choose ONLY ONE MANUFACTURER and stick to that one manufacturer's products. Manufacturers create their products to work together as a system. More is NOT always better. When you mix brand names or manufacturers, you run the risk of causing either malnutrition, hypo or hypervitaminosis. Unless you've spent your entire birding career - decades - working with finch nutrition as I have, you should NOT mix different brands!!! You could cause serious liver and kidney damage as well as create weakened birds.


Parasite Control


Medications

  • A broad spectrum antibiotic such as Morning Bird's Amoxitex (Amoxicillin).
  • An anti-coccidia medication such as Trimethoprim/Sulfa - which also covers E.coli and Salmonella.
  • An alternate for E.coli and Salmonella such as Furaltadone.
  • An anti-fungal such as Medistatin for Candida (yeast) and fungal infections.
  • An antibiotic cream such as Neosporin or Bacitracin for cuts, scrapes and abrasions.
  • A medicated eyewash such as Colloidal Silver for eye infections and injuries.
  • An electrolyte solution such as Dr. Rob Marshall's Quik Gel

Miscellaneous

Measuring Spoons
Egg Candler
Spatula for scraping poop
Cotton Swabs
Toothpicks
Millimeter gauge
Nail Clippers
Large Spoon for mixing feed

Before I go on to the OPTIONAL items, I'd like to share what I feel to be the absolute necessities that should be kept on hand when keeping and breeding Gouldians and other small finches. The following list is what I keep on hand at ALL times, regardless of how many birds or what season they are cycling through.

Banding Supplies

Plastic Open Bands
Aluminum Closed Bands
Band Cutter
Tweezers
Toothpicks

This following will give you an idea of some of the more OPTIONAL items you may want to keep on hand if you keep more than one bird, or are going to breed them.

Emergency Supplies

Blood Stop Powder
Alcohol
Hydrogen Peroxide
Saline Solution
Antibiotic Ointment
Medical Tape
Band Cutters
Syringes
Eye Droppers
Plastic Tweezers

OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT

KRISTEN REEVES, MEADOWLARK FARMS AVIAN SUPPLY, INC.

  • Net - to capture those elusive escapees
  • Additional Cage - just in case
  • Hospital Cage - this really isn't optional and should be a cage small enough that your bird can't bop around in it. When you need to place your bird in a hospital cage, you want it to conserve energy and focus that energy on recovering. The smaller the cage, the better.
  • Syringes - for eye washing, taking up samples, gram stains, feeding babies, flushing out wounds, etc.
  • Timers - to be certain your birds get appropriate lighting even when you aren't home.
  • Good lighting. It may be Broad or Full Spectrum Lighting - in place of natural daylight, but if not actual daylight, must be accompanied by a good D3 supplement
  • Brooder - eggs & chick care
  • Hand Feeding Equipment & Supplies - abandoned chick care
  • Gram Stain Kit - keeping many finches can be costly at the Vet. Learning to do your own tests can help
  • Containers to Hold Equipment
  • Shelving Units or Storage Medication Cabinet - some medications need to be out of heat/cold and light and ALL need to be out of reach of small children.
  • Microscope, Slides & Coverslips
  • Travel Cage or Pet Boxes - vet visits, selling your birds, moving them from one area to another, or when bringing home NEW birds.
  • Mortar & Pestle - to crush meds, cuttlebone, oyster shell, etc.
  • Humidifier - if your birds area is especially dry
  • Alternate Heat Source - in case of power/heat outage
  • Live Plants - make sure to check the Safe & Harmful Plants link on the Housing page
  • Grow Light - for sprouting your own seed and growing your own millet
  • Seed Sprouting Equipment and/or Dehydrator - to make bird greens - you can use your microwave too!
  • Chitted Seed Equipment - strainers, bowls, Bragg's Unpasteurized Apple Cider Vinegar, Virkon S or KD Cleanser for soaking
  • Electrostatic Air Cleaner - to keep dust and dander out of the rest of your home

Hand Rearing Supplies

Electrolyte replacement formula
Several 1cc syringes
Eyedroppers
Feeding spoon
Toothpicks
Water cleanser
Hand Feeding Formula

Spray millet

Gram Stain Supplies


Gram's Iodine
Safranin
Decolorizer
Crystal Violet
GLASS slides
GLASS coverslips
Microscope
Heat source for fixing slides
Tweezers & Swabs