Finches vs Canaries: Which One To Choose?

Finches vs Canaries

Finches and Canaries are just as popular as most other pet birds. That is why bird lovers want to know which one would be a better pet or easier to manage. So I thought maybe it’s time to discuss Finch vs Canary and compare them.

The Canaries actually belong to the family of Finches and have many similar traits. Finches have a wide variety of colors but most Canaries have a yellow color. Finches and Canaries are small, social birds and live on a seed-based diet as their main food. However, most Finches are larger than Canaries and live longer than Canaries.

When it comes to choosing a pet bird, there are lots of things to consider. But the most important thing to consider is the birds’ characteristics. So let’s check out the differences and similarities between Finches and Canaries to find out which one will be the best choice for you.

Finches vs Canaries: Comparison Table

Scientific NameFringillidaeSerinus Canaria
Native ToSouth America, Eurasia and Africa, Hawaii, etc. Canary, Azores, and Madeira islands
Size3 to 10 inches4 to 5 inches
ColorAvailable in a wide variety of colorsMostly yellowish color
Main DietSeed-based foodSeed-based food
BehaviorSocial and friendlyNot always friendly
Lifespan5 to 10 years10-15 years

Know More: Zebra Finch Vs Society Finch.

Finches vs Canaries: What are The Differences and Similarities?

There are many types of Finches, just as there are many types of Canaries. So even though a few from each bird seem similar, they also have some noticeable differences. In the following part of the article, I have discussed some of the major differences.


Finches are available in many countries or parts of the world, such as South America, Africa, Hawaii, Eurasia, and a few more. On the other hand, Canaries are originally from the Canary Islands. And also native to the Azores, and Madeira islands.


Finches are available in many sizes, ranging from 3 to 10 inches. However, Canaries are usually smaller and grow around 4 to 6 inches. And while Finches can be of many different colors and patterns, most Canaries have a yellowish color.

Food Habit

If you read my other article, you might have noticed that I tend to take in birds with the same diet because they are more manageable and these are no different. As for Finches and Canaries, they have a similar seed-based diet. However, Canaries have a preference for sunflower seeds.


Both Finches and Canaries can be friendly and they are suitable as pets. However, Finches often tend to be less human-friendly and take slightly longer to get used to their surroundings. And while both birds have nice singing sounds, they are often very vocal, which can be a pain in the ears.


Canaries live around 10-15 years even in captivity while Finches may last 5 to 10 years. However, it all depends on the birds’ health condition, nutrition or food habits, environment, and how well you care for them.

Also Check: Finches Vs Budgies: What Is The Difference?


Pros and Cons of Finches as Pets


  • Finches are very beautiful and can be found in variable bright colors.
  • Though some Finches are larger than Canaries, you can still manage at least a pair of them in a small cage.
  • They have a steady food habit, making it cost-effective.
  • Finches are also inexpensive compared to Canaries.
  • Like Canaries, Finches are low-maintenance birds that require minimum care.


  • Larger Finches are not always very friendly and can end up bullying other birds.
  • In my experience, I found Finches harder to tame than Canaries.
  • And as they belong to the parrot species, Finches can be awfully loud, especially during breeding seasons.

Pros and Cons of Canaries as Pets


  • Compared to most other pet birds, including Finches, Canaries have a longer lifespan.
  • They are usually low-maintenance birds, making it easier for you to care for them.
  • Give them enough time, and you can train them pretty easily and get along well.
  • They have a beautiful melodic voice and it can often be soothing to your ears.
  • Canaries are smaller than Finches. So they won’t take up a lot of space.


  • Though their singing sounds seem pleasing, they can be annoying and loud sometimes.
  • Canaries are usually more expensive than Finches.
  • They can also be very messy because they keep flinging food and housing materials everywhere.

Read More: Are Java Sparrows Rare?

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can I keep Finches with Canaries?

Yes, you can easily keep Finches with Canaries but only if you follow a few things first. You must keep them in separate cages so that they can get used to having each other around. After that, you can gradually move them to the same cage.

Q. Which one is better? Finch or Canary?

Both Finches and Canaries are excellent when it comes to being pets. While Finches are slightly more social, Canaries can take a little longer to get along with humans. Besides, they both can create a melodic sound. So you can choose any of them as you wish.

Q. What birds can live with Finches?

You can keep Finches with birds of similar sizes, diets, and required temperatures. In this regard, Java Sparrows, Canaries, other Finches, Button Quails, Budgies, etc., can be ideal choices. However, you should avoid birds with territorial and aggressive natures.

Q. What birds can live with Canaries?

The same rule applies when keeping other birds with Canaries. They should require a similar temperature and diet because managing such birds becomes easier. And such birds are Finches, Java Sparrows, Parrot Finches, Zebra Finches, etc.


Comparing Finches vs Canaries is very helpful if you plan to have either or both of them. And what I wrote today was purely based on my experience regarding both these types of birds. But remember that all birds have different personalities. So you have to try adjusting based on that.

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