I often get asked about what cages I recommend for finches (Gouldian + other). So I thought I’d put together something of a guide to buying a finch cage. I’ve certainly owned about all of them by now!
You can basically follow this guideline for most finches as well as canaries.
What you Need to Know
Bar spacing, which you’ve never thought about in your whole entire life, now becomes the main thing. Finch cage bars should not be more than 0.5”, that’s ½ inch apart. A lot of cages have bigger spacing. You’ll drive yourself nuts. Especially if your spouse measures wrong. You measure from the center of the bar to the center of the next bar.
Half-inch bars work for most finches and canaries.
How many finches fit in a cage?
Now, I know there’s a chart out there someplace that says to follow only square feet and not height. I don’t agree. I did some experiments, and found that height matters – a little. You can’t just double the number of birds to a cage because you doubled the height, that won’t work. But maybe if your cage says, according to the numbers, it will hold 3.5 finches and you want it to hold 4 – the extra height helps. Much easier than dividing a finch 😉
I actually have my own calculator with a formula works for me. You can look here if you like.
Also, this is all for non-breeding-season. If you have birds other than Gouldians (like the pushier zebra finches) and it’s breeding season, the whole game changes. For canaries, there’s a whole different set of rules.
Another oddity you will find is that online sellers mention cages in height, but what we want to know is width.
They also call everything a flight cage; I don’t call them flight cages until they are about 30 wide and 36 inches tall.
OK here we go….
Cages for One Pair of Finches or Canaries
My favorite size cage for one finch pair with no plans to raise babies or breed…….
Prevue 30x18x18 inch white finch cage
This is the best beginner cage hands down. They stack, if you want that feature. They’re big enough for a couple of finches to fly back and forth to get exercise. And they’re durable.
Now, you’re going to see very similar cages around that cost less, and you’re going to think this person just wants me to buy that cage because it’s an affiliate link. Well you’re partly right – it is an affiliate link, as are many of my links. I will make a tiny little bit of money if you click. Like under a dollar I think. But the reason I don’t recommend the cheaper cages is this.
- Cheaper cages are made cheaply. The bars can bend – in fact a baby bird can get its head stuck in them. Truth!
- Cheaper cages don’t last as long. The pain flakes off and they begin to rust.
- This company has longevity, so I trust them. Prevue Hendryx has been around a long time. I don’t work there, nor does anyone I know. They just make good products that I’ve used for years.
I wrote a little more about the cheaper cages here and here.
Once you get the cage, go here (coming soon) to read how to set it up properly. (Hint: it’s not readily apparent)
Let’s say you want to keep more finches. Could be more pairs, could be more types of birds. Now you need more cages. Let’s take a look at what is out there.
Cages for 2 or 3 pairs of finches or canaries
Once again, I’m going with Prevue. The Prevue Hampton F070 Deluxe Divided Breeder cage – why did I wait so long to buy one of these?
Finally got them, and this was a game changer.
It’s well made, it stacks. The dividers come out because (hey I already told you this) they need the length for flying. There are just so many possibilities.
You can buy the bottom row and the stand, or a 2-pack or more. I bought 3 levels of cages, so 6 spaces total or 3 if I have the dividers out. The bar spacing is ½”, perfect for finches.
If that price gives you sticker shock, there is a knockoff here. I am not recommending it – I’ve never owned it. Just offering options here. If I had it to do over, I’d buy the (original, name brand) divided cage again. I love it.
Were you thinking more of a colony style setup? There are lots of cages to choose from that range from 30” wide to about 37”, then you get into the idea of doubling them up for more flying space.
This Pawhut cage is particularly nice, and I think it’s a good deal. There are two cages mounted on one nice stand. It’s got almost 5 stars in the reviews. You can detach the body from the base if you want, and it gives a total of 64 inches of flying room.
Another couple of options for colony cages:
Prevue Hendryx model F040 and F050, shown below. The difference is the size, the F040 being smaller. You can choose white or black in each. I started out with white, quickly switched to black, and after I had about 10 black cages wished I had done white. A finch cage where your finches show best is the key. And where poop shows least! You decide.
Prevue F040 Large Flight Cage for Finches
This is the “large,” which measures 31X20.5 X 53”. You can see that the shelf below it is less and the cage is more of the total height, compared to the one above it. It’s up to you which is important. Remember, you can’t keep double the birds, but they will appreciate the extra space.
Prevue F050 Large Flight Cage for Finches
The XL cage measures 37X23X60”. I feel like this is the best value. You gain a little space, it doesn’t take up that much more on the wall, and they are durable. I have 2 of these that have suffered heavy abuse since 2014. They’re still going strong. I roll them outside, hose them off, steam-clean sometimes, spray almost daily with Poop Off or vinegar. Great cages.
Here’s the other thing with the XL Prevue. You can remove the sides and link them together. So you can make a 74” long cage, truly almost an aviary from these 2 inexpensive cages. You can’t do that with the Large, apparently.
This is a slightly better picture.
I don’t have that many photos of the setup when it was tied together for some reason. I just zip tied them, it was easy. And we sawed the legs off to put the whole thing up on a cabinet, but then later we put some wheels back on and did up the sides for separate cages again.
So there you have it! There are a few other brands we’ve also tried, you can see those in this post.