Re: birding-aus Finch Behaviour

To: Michael Todd <>
Subject: Re: birding-aus Finch Behaviour
From: James Davis <>
Date: Tue, 2 Mar 1999 10:02:03 +1000 (EST)


Could it be possible that the finches are using the leaves to
line their nests to repell pests...mites, ticks, etc.   Are the
leaves of pandanus aromatic when crushed?  If so, the chemicals emitted
may repell pests.

Dr. Wm. James Davis, Editor
Interpretive Birding Bulletin

On Mon, 1 Mar 1999, Michael Todd wrote:

> Hello everyone,
> I'm currently in the process of putting together an article on finch 
> behaviour and was wondering whether anyone has any interesting anecdotes of 
> things that they have seen finches doing or heard of finches doing. 
> To start the ball rolling, there is a particular piece of behaviour that
Crimson Finches have been credited with. It involves pecking holes in the green 
leaves of Pandanus (Pandanus spiralis). This was documented  back in the 1940's 
in Emu and I know of aviculturalists that have witnessed it with their aviary 
birds. So far in my study of Crimson behaviour I haven't seen it done, however, 
it is a common sight here to see dead Pandanus leaves with the holes in them. 
Has anyone else seen Crimsons doing this? I can only think of two reasons for 
why they would do it- to eat the cut-out pieces of leaf, or to eat insects that 
are in the leaf. Neither of them seem quite right to me as the Pandanus leaf 
doesn't look terribly appetising and it doesn't seem to be likely to be subject 
to insect attack. Any ideas?
> Regards,
> Mick
> Michael Todd
> Finch Researcher,
> Dept.of Environment and Heritage,
> Pormpuraaw, Qld, Australia, 4871

To unsubscribe from this list, please send a message to

Include "unsubscribe birding-aus" in the message body (without the quotes)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU