November grass?

Discussion in 'Other Animals and Invertebrate' started by bluedragon, Nov 20, 2017.

  1. bluedragon

    bluedragon Well-Known Member

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    hi all i just need an id im not sure if this is November grass but if it is im using it for my finches thanks.
    P1000712.JPG P1000713.JPG P1000714.JPG P1000715.JPG

    or is it just normal grass?
     
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  2. SpottedPythons

    SpottedPythons Well-Known Member

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    I'm definitely not an expert on grass... but I do keep finches. Do you need it for nesting purposes? Because if it is nesting, the finches won't mind what kind of grass it is unless it's poisonous.
     
  3. bluedragon

    bluedragon Well-Known Member

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    yeah but want to know were to get it because when its dead it looks realy nice in aviary
     
  4. Flaviemys purvisi

    Flaviemys purvisi Very Well-Known Member

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    No idea mate, but if it is November grass, it's only going to be for another 9 days. ;)
     
  5. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 APS Veteran APS Veteran

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    @bluedragon, it has been too many decades since I kept finches and the names November Grass and Swamp Grass, used today in conjunction with finches that line nests, were not around in my day. From the one photo I can find (on Gumtree) your grass is too coarse to be November Grass. Given its flower heads I’d say it was a species of Themeda, a genus found throughout Australia and New Guinea (and through to Asia and even Africa). The Aussie species are commonly called Kangaroo Grass. Some of these can be abrasive - you can tell straight away by running your hand up and down the stems and leaves.

    I used to supply my finches with basically three grades of dry material to build their nests. Broad: Wild Oats, Bulrush and Ponytail Palm leaves and the like. Medium: Any taller weed grasses with moderately thin stems and leaves. Thin: Coconut fibre, pilfered from old mattresses and lounges that had been left to rot, the dead leaves from Blue Fescue tussocks (Festuca glauca) and annual Isolepis that came up in the garden. The leaves of ‘Fairy Lights’ Isolepis cernua / Scirpus cernuus would be even better if you can get hold of some. You can also get fine palm fibres from Kentia palms - the old leaf bases have them attached.

    Plus I would supply feathers. Waterfowl and pigeons and doves are unusual in that they moult down feathers as adults. So I would collect these when available, along with feathers that were fluffy but only had small quills. The feathers just need to inspected or stored or fumigated before use to ensure that they are free of bird lice.
     
  6. SpottedPythons

    SpottedPythons Well-Known Member

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    My finches will nest in anything, coarse or not. They once tried to rip up some newspaper they painstakingly extracted from the tray underneath (still don't know how they did that). :)
     
  7. bluedragon

    bluedragon Well-Known Member

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    is this November grass [​IMG]
     
  8. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 APS Veteran APS Veteran

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    I'm afraid I don't know. What I can say is that this is extremely similar in structure to the dried material I saw for sale. It certainly is fine enough. So the only question is how pliable it is when it dries out.

    @SpottedPythons, Maybe they were looking for softer material? It depends on the species how finnicky they are. Most are not too fussy but some definitely prefer to line the nest with soft, pliable materials. I just aimed to cater to all tastes and it worked well.
     
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  9. bluedragon

    bluedragon Well-Known Member

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    all that i know that its just off google but i think its called mexican feather grass
     
  10. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 APS Veteran APS Veteran

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    Mexican Feather Grass (Nassella tenuissima) is a Class 1 declared pest plant in Queensland and considered an invasive noxious weed in other states. So that would not be the identity of November Grass.

    EDIT:
    @bluedrago. After a measure of further digging, it seems that ‘Swamp Grass’ and ‘November Grass’ are one in the same: Lachnagrostis filiformis (syn. Agrostis avenacea). The common names used outside of aviculture are Blown Grass or Fairy Grass. The mature inflorescences detach from the plants and are blown by the wind, and can pile up against fences and other farm structures in substantial amounts. It is these flower stalks that are most collected for aviary use.
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2017
  11. SpottedPythons

    SpottedPythons Well-Known Member

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    I just ran out of the coco fibre/down/dried grass stuff I normally give them, so they started weaving newspaper in... :D But my finches are NOT finicky, they literally will nest with anything that looks vaguely long, skinny, and fairly soft. They are society finches.
     
  12. Bluetongue1

    Bluetongue1 APS Veteran APS Veteran

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    I used to know them as Bengalese. They are one of the hardier and easy to breed species. A bit like Zebra Finches, you start off with one pair and end up with an aviary full.

    As I say, it’s been a long time since I kept but I have heard of providing machine shredded newspaper. You no doubt cut your own. If you know of a nearby produce store that deals with hay bales you can usually collect some of the spilt stuff with their consent. I have done this in the past (but not for finches). It will normally have a mix of thick and thin stems, depending on what was harvested and when. Hessian or hemp pulled out into strands and bits of an old (clean) cotton mop head unwound into single strands, can all be used for construction. Teased out bits of soft cotton cloth and the flower heads from pampas grass are good substitutes for feathers. There is other stuff but these I know have worked for various people. Just a few alternative backup ideas should you ever want to try them...
     
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  13. SpottedPythons

    SpottedPythons Well-Known Member

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    No, I didn't give them newspaper... they ripped it from the poop tray underneath when I ran out of the hay/cocofibre stuff! :) I do use the hay bales though, my guinea pigs eat them, and that's what the finches normally get. Thanks for the ideas, haven't tried them but I'll give them a go. :D
     

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