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24

Double-barred Finch

(Taeniopygia bichenovii)
Alternative names: "Banded Finch", "Double-bar", "White-rumped Double-bar", "White-rumped Banded Finch", "Owl-faced Finch", "Bicheno's Finch", "Black-ringed Finch"
Size: 10-11 cm
Weight: 10 g (average)
SUBSECTIONS:     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Taxonomy, classification

See Double-barred Finch at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

At the place where we lived in 2003-2006, 20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, Double-barred Finches, race "bichenovii", visited us regularly in flocks of 10 to 20.

Click here for sighting information

Photos

Race "bichenovii"

Not the photos you want? Or are you after even better quality? Have a look here .

Frontal view of a Double-barred Finch; this full-frontal view shows how the species received its name as "Owl-faced Finch"
[Deriah Aboriginal Area, NSW, November 2013]

Frontal view of a Double-barred Finch on the ground
[Eulah Creek, NSW, April 2011]

Near-frontal view of a Double-barred Finch checking out the area before moving in for a drink from a water bowl
[20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, September 2006]

Near-frontal view of two Double-barred Finches (photo courtesy of C. Hayne)

Lateral view of a Double-barred Finch; note the white rump which is characteristic of race "bichenovii"
[Eulah Creek, NSW, February 2014]

Lateral view of a Double-barred Finch on the ground
[Eulah Creek, NSW, April 2011]

Double-barred Finch seen in bright sunlight
[Deriah Aboriginal Area, NSW, February 2009]

Close-up shot of a Double-barred Finch feeding on the ground

This dorsal view of a Double-barred Finch shows how glossy the plumage can appear with the sunlight at a certain angle
[Deriah Aboriginal Area, NSW, March 2009]

Dorsal view of a Double-barred Finch, different angle
[Eulah Creek, NSW, April 2011]

Pair of Double-barred Finches; photo courtesy of R. Druce
[Leard State Forest, near Maules Creek, NSW, October 2012]

"The seven dwarfs" - Double-barred Finches huddled together at the end of a cold night
[20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, August 2006]

Double-barred Finches on our lawn - sometimes up to 50 are observed together, especially when grass seeds are available
[20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, 2006]

Double-barred Finch approaching a waterhole
[Pilliga scrub, NSW, December 2011]

Double-barred Finch taking a good mouthful
[Pilliga scrub, NSW, December 2011]

Double-barred Finch taking a bath
[Pilliga scrub, NSW, December 2011]

A bunch of Double-barred Finches coming in for a drink
[Pilliga scrub, NSW, May 2011]

Immature Double-barred Finch moulting into its adult plumage
[Mt. Kaputar NP, NSW, March 2013]

Near-frontal view of a fledgling Double-barred Finch (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, January 2012]

Dorsal view of the same fledgling Double-barred Finch as shown above (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, January 2012]

Close-up portrait of the same fledgling Double-barred Finch as shown above (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, January 2012]

Comparison between a Double-barred Finch and a Red-browed Finch (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, February 2013]

Race "annulosa"

Not the photos you want? Or are you after even better quality? Have a look here .

Frontal view of a Double-barred Finch; this full-frontal view shows how the species received its name as "Owl-faced Finch"
[Fogg Dam NR, NT, August 2014]

Lateral view of a Double-barred Finch from slightly above, providing a clear view of the black rump characteristic of race "annulosa"
[Fogg Dam NR, NT, August 2014]

Lateral view of a Double-barred Finch
[Fogg Dam NR, NT, August 2014]

Dorsal view of a Double-barred Finch
[Fogg Dam NR, NT, August 2014]

Breeding information

Breeding season: Jul - May Eggs: 4 - 6 Incubation period: 12 - 14 days Fledging age: 21 days

Given the right conditions, Double-barred Finches can breed any time of the year.

Nest

"bungobittah", "malunna" = Nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Dome basket Material: Grass with feather lining Height above ground 1 - 5 m

Double-barred Finch collecting nesting material (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, September 2011]

Double-barred Finch nest in a Californian pepper tree
[Maules Creek, NSW, September 2011]

Look into a Double-barred Finch nest with three chicks (photo courtesy of R. Druce)
[Maules Creek, NSW, September 2011]

Eggs

"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 16 x 11 mm Colour: White Shape: Tapered oval

Behaviour

Social behaviour: Communal Mobility: Dispersive Elementary unit: FLock

All species of finches known to us are highly sociable.

Double-barred Finch looking out of its hideaway in dense growth along the side of a gravel road
[Mt. Kaputar NP, NSW, March 2013]

Double-barred Finches belong to those birds that squat in a pool to take a bath and then wiggle their wings to spatter themselves with water.

Double-barred Finches taking a bath
[Deriah Aboriginal Area, NSW, 2007]

Food, Diet

Adults: Seeds Dependents: Regurgitated seeds Water intake: Daily

Like all other finches known to us, Double-barred Finches feed on seeds. These include grass seeds and seeds of reeds.

When seeing a Double-barred Finch clinging to a wild sunflower stem, one may be misled into believing that it is after the sunflower's seeds, but these are too large for finches; instead, the bird shown in the photo used the sunflower to gain access to grass seeds below
[Eulah Creek, NSW, April 2011]

Two Double-barred Finches nibbling on grass seeds
[20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, June 2012]

Call/s

For this species we have recorded the following call/s. The interpretation of their meaning is our own; comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome.

dbfinch_20140313.mp3 bichenovii (NW NSW) Various (Arrival & depart. of group) MD
dbfinch_20140817.mp3 annulosa (Darwin, NT) Various MD

These pages are largely based on our own observations. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.