How to tell male & female finches apart

Written by susan reynolds
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How to tell male & female finches apart
(Jupiterimages/ Images)

It is moderately easy to tell male and female finches apart, since their markings are usually gender distinct. Like many birds, the male finch is more brightly coloured than the female, since the males must compete for the female's attention. A simple visual inspection is usually correct in determining gender, despite the fact that there are many varieties of finches. Male finches are more outgoing, brighter and boisterous than the female finches in every species.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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  1. 1

    Watch the birds to see which ones are singing. The males are usually the only ones who sing.

  2. 2

    Look at the colours of your finches. Fully-grown male finches have bright red colouring on their faces or breasts. Females usually do not have any red colouring, or they may only have some redness on the crown of their heads. Red colouring in males applies to African Red Head finches and European Goldfinches.

  3. 3

    Look at the beak colour of a Zebra finch. Males have red beaks and black bars on their chests. Females have orange beaks and less colourful feathers.

  4. 4

    Look at your Purple Breasted Gouldian finch for a deeper purple on the males. Or, the males may have a bright blue circle of feathers on their heads that is deeper and bigger than in females.

  5. 5

    Examine your Green Singer finch for brighter green colouring on the males. Females have a circle around their throat.

  6. 6

    Look at the head colouring of a Blue Cap Cordon Bleu. Males have deeper blue colouring while females are more brown in colour.

  7. 7

    Look at the cheeks of a Red Cheeked Cordon Bleu. Males have bright red cheeks and intense blue feathers.

  8. 8

    Look at an Owl finch to see that the males have a larger area of white head feathers than females.

Tips and warnings

  • Choose the males that are the brightest coloured and best singers to breed with your female finches.

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