EDWISE  - EDITOR AND EDUCATION CONSULTANT
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Eye of the Optimist-Happy as a Gouldian Finch

My two Gouldian Finches are singing duets for me these days, most of each morning and each afternoon After leaving them in the hands of an inexperienced pet sitter for the past three weeks, I returned to find my little friends in reasonably good condition. Once treated with a little extra TLC, they appeared to be healthier and happier then ever. They have never kept singing together like this before.

These two birdies received basic care for three weeks. They therefore needed a thorough clean-up by the time I returned. During my absence, they had begun the last phase of their molt so that there were down feathers all over the place. I washed and disinfected each of their cages and all the paraphernalia, laundered their night covers, and gave them a medicated bath to reduce mites and soothe their skin. As one of them appeared to have some congestion, I served up some drinking water spiked with medicine for a few days. (They easily get a sinus infection and cough from preening.) The coughing and sinus dripping have dissipated. When we had the first chance, I took them into the sunshine for awhile, which also boosts their physical well being.

I brought back treats from abroad. They love the hanging honey-coated millet sticks, and have been spending a lot of time biting off and eating grains. They seem to enjoy doing that so much that they sing while eating the millet, but cut off singing to chew at more stuff. What's more, they sometimes strain themselves reaching up or down to get at seeds that they fall. In addition, the one that is camera shy, braved the shoot regardless of the proximity of the camera because he was so eager to get at the millet grain. (I cannot display a picture here for this computer is not reading the apparatus when I connect it, so that I cannot download photos. Huh??)

It is truly amazing to see and hear how these lovely little colourful finches serenade each other and me. It is especially marvelous to witness them singing simultaneously. Their happiness leaves me feeling happy and fulfilled.

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