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Beauty In Danger

Gouldian finches in the wild

By Marcus Pollard

gouldianThere are very few bird keepers who would not be aware of the beauty of the Gouldian finch (Erythrura gouldiae), or Lady Gouldian finch as it is also known. Take a stroll through the World Wide Web and you will be staggered by the number of websites devoted to this species throughout the United States, let alone the rest of the world.

Yet from all too vivid experience, I can attest that only a small number of people realize that the very same Gouldian finch that is the treasure of many aviculturists is in real peril in its wild home in Outback Australia. The following quotes help illustrate the Gouldian finch’s declining numbers:

“It is an exceptionally fine sight to see this mass of Gouldian, masked and longtailed finches literally covering the ground and trees around the waterhole. These three species one finds at every waterhole and always in untold numbers ...” (Heumann, 1926)

**For the full article, pick up the August 2008 issue of BIRD TALK**

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