Birds Improve Responsibility

Australian zebra finches prove to be messy, difficult to watch for with abundance of eggs


Submitted by: AJ Khan

Khan’s three Australian zebra finches rest in their cage. Zebra finches are the most popular cage bird to own, as they don’t require too much time.

A more unusual pet is a bird. Birds contain about 14,000 different species, but only a fraction of those species have been domesticated.    

For AJ Khan ’23, he has grown up with birds for the entirety of his life. Khan’s mother has “kept birds since before [Khan] was born.” His mother takes complete care of them. She cleans their cages weekly, feeds and waters them daily, and sweeps the floor beneath their cage biweekly as well. Khan confides, “I call them my mom’s birds because I don’t like them. They always go ‘chirp chirp chirp.’ “

These birds, Australian zebra finches, “chirp” incessantly, according to Khan. They also live for a whopping (in Khan’s opinion) five to seven years. 

Additionally, these birds can multiply if the owner doesn’t keep a stern watch on their behavior and status of their cage, “Usually, my mom cleans out the eggs [from the cage], but one time she forgot to and they turned into birds,” says Khan. 

For anyone contemplating a bird purchase, Khan warns, “It’s a waste of money. They make a mess. Although they don’t smell, their food does smell.” Khan’s final message for anyone seeking a bird is to “commit to getting a ‘fun’ bird. Don’t get a ‘lame’ bird.”