A seedeater with fairly simple requirements, this hardy species soon makes itself at home in a well-planted aviary, although it may at first be shy. It enjoys roosting in trees of the evergreen variety.
Despite the heavy beak, typical of the hawfinch family, it is peaceful and non-aggressive, but should be housed with birds of similar size, not smaller.
Its attractive, glossy plumage makes it a handsome specimen, and its immaculate appearance is maintained throughout the year, even when molting. It is an excellent bird for exhibition.
Size: 20 cm (8 in)
Head and throat: black. Neck: blue-grey. Belly: reddish-brown. Rump: white. Wings: black, barred with white. Tail: black. Beak: yellow with a lilac patch at the base. The tip of the beak is black. Legs: pink.
Paler in color. Head and throat: grey. Beak: yellow.
Plain canary seed, sunflower seed, a little hemp seed, and some buckwheat form the basic diet. Regular supplies of green food and some live food are much appreciated.
A pair of these birds may be encouraged to begin nesting in a wicker nest basket. The basket should be tied securely in a position with plenty of covers. Sometimes a pair builds a nest. A maximum of four eggs form the normal clutch and the hen sits alone for the 14-day incubation period. At this time, the pair should be supplied with plenty of live food, such as maggots, mealworms, and small smooth caterpillars. Canary-rearing food and extra green food are very beneficial. Japanese Hawfinch Information
- The birds are native to deciduous forests and mixed forests rather than evergreen forests. The bird can be commonly found in localities like wood parks and orchards.
- The birds can not be easily seen as they are very quiet. Because they are shy they can not be traced during the breeding season.
- The birds generally reside in a single locality and hardly migrate to other places. It has been noticed that they sometimes move toward the south from their actual direction of flight. They move in small groups of around 20 birds in number, though a flock of 400 hundred has been observed.
- The birds generally settle down in open areas.
- Though quiet in nature and rarely makes a sound. But at times it produces short but hard metallic sounds. During the breeding season the bird whistles like human beings.
- The bird can be found in trade meets for sale but they are not that popular among pet lovers because of their unattractive plumage and inability to sing. But they are of great importance to aviculturists because of their hardiness and ability to withstand the vagaries of nature.
- The bird has the peculiar habit of bill-to-bill feeding on the chicks of other birds.
- In the wild, the bird is the victim of predatory birds like hawks. During the time of incubation, they are often attacked by nest robbers like snakes, squirrels, and such.
In Japan, the bird is hunted for food.
See more: Indian Blue Roller