Care and Diet
Before you can bring a bird into your home, you must purchase everything you will require for his care.
Right Food - Diet is the most important factor in your bird's life. A poor diet can be the underlying cause of many health problems.
Cage - The size of the cage you need will depend on the bird (or birds) you plan to keep. Don’t place bird cage in the Kitchen read more about dangers environment.
Food and Water Bowls - Stainless steel is the ideal material for these cups because it’s easy to scrub and disinfect
Perches - Perches can be made of concrete, plastic, rope, or wood
Toys - Most birds benefit from having items in their cage to keep them active and entertained. Don't stuff the cage with too many toys
New Baby - Care & Diet
- Once your baby is at the edge of the carrier place the carrier to the door of the cage and let the baby step in .
- Have fresh water and pellets and seed available for your baby for the first week , after which you should just feed pellets , either Zupreem fruitblend medium , pretty bird medium or Harrison’s. We have a perfect mix we sell on our website that includes seed with pellets in the correct ratio.
- For the first three days at least your baby should be in its cage most of the time as it is important that your baby settles in and starts to eat as soon as possible . Please note it sometimes take three days for a baby bird to really start eating well in a new environment.
- When you see your baby eating well and starting to relax it is ok for your baby to come out of its cage more often.
- If your baby is reluctant to come out of its cage it is fine to reach in and take hold of your birds feet gently and get the bird to perch on your hand . Once the baby is out of the cage move a good distance from the cage and talk to the baby to comfort him .Try and spend extended periods with your baby at least 30 minutes at a time so that your baby will get to know and love you , talking to and petting your baby will speed the process.
Care & Diet
Basically, birds are very hardy and easy to care for. Poor nutrition or inadequate diet are the most common causes of illness. Dietary deficiencies can lead to a wide range of diseases, from poor feathering to fatty liver disease. Seeds should never make up the bulk of a bird's diet. They are high in fat and low in nutritional value. Certain species, such as Amazons, tend to be obese and may benefit from having seeds completely eliminated from their diets. On the other hand, it may not be prudent to totally cut seeds from the diets of Macaws and Conures which seem to have a higher need for fat. Nuts are a better source of fat and have higher nutritional value.
Some believe that pellets are a complete source for bird nutrition and can be fed to the exclusion of all other foods. While pellets make up a good portion of our birds' diets, we still believe in the benefits of feeding a variety of other healthy foods.
In addition to pellets, we feed our birds fresh fruits and vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds. A varied diet serves a dual purpose. Not only is the bird supplied with healthy foods to eat, it is also mentally stimulating and enjoyable. Birds are smart and do have a sense of taste so it's important to make sure that they are consuming a variety of foods and not just one or two favorite foods.
Read more about parrot diet and nutrition
Read more about Why and how to switch your bird to a pelleted diet
Feeding & Watering:
Make sure your bird has access to food and clean, uncontaminated water daily. Whether using a bottle or bowl, it needs to be washed and refilled daily with fresh water. Fresh foods such as fruits and vegetables should be provided in clean bowls on a daily basis and removed after about two hours to avoid spoilage.
Practicing good hygiene is far more important in the prevention of disease than the use of disinfectants. The cage should be washed and dried in sunlight on a weekly basis and food and water bowls need to be scrubbed daily to prevent the build up slime and algae.
The lining of the cage should also be changed daily as the accumulation of spoiled foods and droppings draws pests and promotes the growth of bacteria and fungi.
Should a disinfectant become necessary, regular chlorine bleach is very efficient and will kill most anything. However, it is corrosive and will pit metal. So when disinfecting the cage, you may want to use the bleach that is recommended for outdoor use. It can be found at most home improvement stores and contains corrosion inhibitors. Make sure the area is well ventilated and free of birds. Mix 3/4 cup bleach to 1 gallon of water. Wash the article down with this solution and let it stand for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and allow to dry in the sun.
It's important for pet birds to be placed outside on a regular basis for exposure to fresh air and sunlight. A bird that is outdoors needs to be protected from weather extremes and direct sunlight as well as predators, rodents and wild birds.
Birds that must be maintained indoors with little or no access to natural light will need to be provided with some type of full spectrum lighting. Healthy birds can tolerate temperatures that are comfortable to humans. During very hot temperatures, a bird may show signs of overheating by panting and holding it's wings away from its body. The feet may also feel very warm to the touch. Heat stroke can occur and misting the bird will quickly cool it down. In very cold temperatures, a bird will sit fluffed up on its perch with its wings held tight against its body. It may perch on only one foot while keeping the other tucked up close to its body for warmth. The feet will also feel cold to the touch. Place the bird in a heated room to warm it up. Never place a bird's cage or play stand near vents, ducts, or drafty windows or doors. Birds can become ill from prolonged exposure.
Read more about danger environment to pet birds
In the wild, most parrots spend their days foraging for food and participating in a variety of flock activities. They fly, climb, open fruits and nuts, and socialize with other members of their flock. Birds require more than a cage to fulfill their intrinsic need for social interaction and activity. They will thrive with attention and wither with neglect. A bird kept in its cage without other activity may develop behavioral problems that include screaming or plucking. Your birds cage should be located near family activity. Be sure to provide your bird with adequate social time outside of its cage. The more time you spend with your bird the more social your bird will be with you. While inside the cage, make sure your bird has a supply of toys that will keep it busy and entertained.
Selecting an Avian Vet:
Birds are unique and the average cat or dog vet will not do. You should have an avian veterinarian lined up prior to acquiring your bird. The vet you choose needs to be qualified to treat birds and know how to handle them. He or she should have a good rapport with birds and not be afraid of them. Try to select a vet that only treats birds or at least a large number.
Whenever possible, try to purchase the largest cage suitable to the species that you can both afford and accommodate. Minimally, the cage should allow for the bird to spread its wings without touching the sides of the enclosure. The cage should also be wider than it is tall, yet still tall enough to accommodate the bird's tail. Avoid cages that are tall and cylindrical. These type cages aren't very practical and don't offer the bird useful room. Also avoid cages with ornamental scroll work. I've seen birds get their leg bands and heads caught on the loops. Powder coated or stainless steel cages are excellent choices. They are both practical and long lasting in addition to being very attractive and easy to clean. Bar spacing is also a very important consideration. If the bars are spaced too far apart, smaller birds may be able to slip through or get their heads wedged between the bars. Even if they don't get their heads stuck, it still presents a danger in homes with other predatory animals like cats and dogs. The cage should also have some horizontal bars so that the bird can climb around the cage easily. Find the list below with the minimum cage sizes for the type of birds that we breed.
Species Minimum Cage Size Bar Spacing
African Greys 24”x24”x30” 3/4” to 1”
Amazons 24”x24”x30” 3/4” to 1”
Large Cockatoos 30”x24”x30” 1” to 1”
Large Macaws 36”x24”x40” 1” to 1”
Conures 18”x18”x18” 5/8” to 3/4”
Lining the Cage:
There are a variety of materials that can be used to line the cage, including corn cob, crushed walnut shells, and wood chips or shavings. We feel the best cage liner is plain old newspaper, paper bags or paper towels. They might not be the most aesthetically pleasing substrates, but they are cheap, functional, and easy to clean. They also do not promote the growth of bacteria and fungi the way that many of the other substrates do. Cedar, redwood, and pressure treated shavings or chips should not be used as they are toxic.
A grate with adequate distance between the cage and lining pan is a must in order to prevent the bird from having access to droppings, substrates and discarded food. Many substrates, especially walnut shells and corn cob litter can be harmful if ingested.