Gouldian Finch - Erythrura gouldiae

Gouldian Finch

Erythrura gouldiae

Family: Estrildidae (Waxbills, Grass-finches, Mannikins, 19 species in Australia). Sometimes included in Subfamily Ploceinae of Family Ploceidae
Size: 14 cm
Distribution: Within about 500km of the coast of NT and the Northeast parts of WA and the most NW parts of QLD.
Status: Common
Habitat: Varied; dense shrubs interspersed with grass, near water
References: Simpson and Day, Reader's Digest

The Gouldian Finch is one of the most brightly coloured birds in the world. Some have black faces, and some (like the one pictured here) have red faces.

The Gouldian finch is not found naturally in Sydney or the Blue Mountains, but many people keep them as pets. The photo below was from a pet bird kept in a large aviary. I have included it because it is such a beautiful bird.

Gouldian Finch - Erythrura gouldiae
Photo: Riverstone, Sydney NSW

Gouldian Finch - Erythrura gouldiae
Artwork: John Gould, 'The Birds of Australia', 1848. Original Scanned Image.

Some Birdwatching Resources


Field Guide to Australian Birds, by Michael Morcombe NEW: Field Guide to Australian Birds, by Michael Morcombe. This one has colour drawings of the eggs and the nests which not many other field guides do (I can't think of any that do). It's an excellent field guide and one of the four main ones (the other three being above this one). The weakness of this field guide is that some of the pictures of the birds aren't as good (or accurate) as the other three most used field guides. It's also the heaviest though there is a pocket edition which is much smaller and lighter.

Purchase from Australia (Booktopia)

Purchase from Australia (Angus & Robertson)


The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia, Graham Pizzey and Frank Knight The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia, Graham Pizzey and Frank Knight. This is the other of the two best bird field guides for Australia. It is the one preferred by many serious birdwatchers. However I find the pictures a bit dull looking for my taste — the birds all kind of look the same to me, making it harder to remember them in my mind. The illustrations are meant to be the most anatomically correct, though. The text descriptions are better than in Simpson and Day. If you want the most serious bird field guide get this one otherwise get Simpson and Day.

Purchase 9th ed. from Australia (Booktopia)

Purchase 9th ed. from Australia (Angus & Robertson)

Purchase 9th ed. from Australia (Dymocks)

Click here to purchase 9th ed. from Australia (The Nile)

Click here to purchase from Australia (Fishpond)

Click here to preorder the 9th ed. from Amazon

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Gouldian Finch - Erythrura gouldiae

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