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Rare Finch Conservation Group (RFCG) adopts exciting new conservation project.
Read the full story on the RFCG LATEST NEWS page.

Orange-breasted Waxbill. Photo Duncan McKenzie - South Africa

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Not yet listed as threatened unexpected declines in the Orange-breasted Waxbill (Amandava subflava) has resulted in the urgent need for the species to be researched. The species has now been selected as the key sentinel bird for 8 threatened South African wetland bird species and 84 common bird species. The 8 Red listed species, ranging from Near Threatened to Critically Endangered, plus all 84 common species that use a similar habitat to the Orange-breasted Waxbill , will all benefit from the BirdLife South Africa and Rare Finch Conservation Group research collaboration.

The Rare Finch Conservation Group (RFCG) was founded in August 2005 by a group of South African and Australian finch enthusiasts who each wish to play a meaningful role in ensuring the ongoing survival in the wild of the world's threatened finch species. The founding RFCG members are all experienced in the field of finch husbandry and wish to utilise these skills to the benefit of wild finches.

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Which birds are popularly known and grouped as finches?

Birds from the families Cardinalidae (cardinals), Fringillidae (finches), Estrildidae (waxbills), Emberizidae (buntings), Passeridae (sparrows), Ploceidae (weavers and widowbirds) and Viduadae (whydahs and indigo finches) are popularly referred to as finches. These birds are coming under increasing pressure in the wild, mainly due to the ongoing loss of suitable habitat and to a lesser extent the trapping of wild birds for the caged bird and scientific research markets. Sadly these minute birds are not high-profile and marketable enough to attract sufficient conservation funding and so many finch populations are simply sliding downhill while conservation entities focus their limited resources on issues like climate change, tigers and gorillas. Many of the world's finches are now under some form of immediate or medium-term threat of extinction while others are heading that way, and yet there is no cohesive plan of action to reverse that trend.

Ongoing habitat loss is something that is in the hands of governments, corporates and private landowners and hopefully humankind will reverse that process during the next decade. In the meantime though the RFCG is working away at aspects of finch conservation that can be addressed at a more practical level.


Visitors to this site are encouraged to look at the rarefinch listing page and find out more about the 77 finch species that have been classified as threatened by Birdlife International.

Please donate now to help save the world's finches in the wild!
The RFCG is entirely dependent on donations and sponsors and would welcome any contribution you may wish to make. Banking details: Rare Finch Conservation Group. Nedbank account number 1933 198885 SWIFT NEDSZAJJ. Sandown Branch 193 305 South Africa.

The group is registered as a section 21 company 2007/ 010385/ 08 which is a non profit organisation and its PBO number for fundraising can be given on application.



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