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Archive for August, 2010

Keeping Parrot As Pets

By Silvanus Koh

Parrots are becoming more popular as pets with each passing day. This is evidenced by the proliferation of Internet discussion lists which provide access to information regarding parrot care and behavior. This upsurge in the number of parrots in homes and the amount of information newly available does not alert the companion parrot owner to a very important and pertinent fact – that parrot keeping is a relatively new phenomenon.

The parrot will live in a cage, so you will need to buy one that is large enough so that the parrot can spread his wings fully. It should be made of wire preferably since the parrot would eat through a wooden one. Make sure the door is large enough so that the parrot can fit through it, and also ensure that the door can’t be opened from the inside. Parrots are very smart so you will need to use a complex door closing mechanism. Remember the bigger the cage is, the happier the parrot will be, so buy the largest one you can afford.

The parrot will want some toys in the cage, such as a swinging perch or a squeaking toy. Make sure that the toy isn’t harmful to the parrot if it is gnawed on. \r\nThe bottom of the cage needs to be lined either with shredder paper, sawdust, straw or sand. The sand will serve as a double purpose since the parrot can gain some minerals from it, and can also use it to shape his beak better. The beak will keep growing like our fingernails and the sand will help filing it to the correct size.

Clean the cage very thoroughly at least once a month. All the metal bars and the bottom tray should be washed out thoroughly with a mild detergent and disinfected as well. Make sure that you clean out the feces of the parrot and leftover food is cleaned up periodically at least two the three times a week. The parrot will not like to live in a dirty area and his life cycle will decrease if he feels stressed all the time.

The parrot likes to be fed in many small meals instead of having one large meal a day. Pre-packaged parrot food is good for the parrot too since it will contain the correct mixes of minerals and vitamins. Make sure that you give the parrot fresh food at least twice a day and keep it clean and bacteria free. Seeds and nuts should be fed to the parrot sparingly since these foods are fatty and contain few nutrients. The parrot will also need a water bowl with fresh water supplied twice a day. You need to clean the water and the food bowl each time you refill it to keep your parrot healthy and happy. The parrot will eat fruits, nuts, vegetables and grains. Make sure you give him a balanced diet and give him healthy snacks only.

If you want to teach your parrot to talk, start when he is young since he will then pick up the language much faster. Keep trying the same word or phrase on the parrot at the same time of each day, such as ‘hello!’ or ‘how are you?’. Make sure the bird is looking at you and paying attention. Try repeating the words and phrases you want the parrot to learn and try to say the words when you do a certain activity so he can learn to associate an activity with a word. If your parrot already knows some phrases, encourage him to use them so he doesn’t forget them. Whistling is also a great thing to teach a parrot, since he will know how to whistle entire tunes. Even playing records can help your parrot learn words but do not play the same word all day or the parrot will be very bored.

The parrot will also need to be groomed at least once a week. You can do this by misting him carefully with a spray bottle, or even bathing him in a lined sink. Use water that is lukewarm and use a shampoo that is especially designed for birds. Parrots love to be in the water, so do not startle him by splashing water into his face, or he will not want to bathe anymore. If he does seem to be afraid of water, be gentle and persist, and soon he will love water as much as you do. Use a towel to lightly dab your bird dry a little bit but do not rub him and do not blow dry your bird. Just let him sit in a sunny corner of your house to dry naturally and make sure he is warm so he doesn’t catch a cold. The wings should be clipped to prevent flight, and the nails need to be groomed as well. Do small amounts of clipping frequently to avoid injury and to keep the bird well groomed all the time. Make sure you observe the vet or groom the first few times and have him teach you the proper techniques before you attempt this, since improper cutting could hurt the parrot.

Let your parrot move around your apartment at least half an hour every day. As he becomes more tame and potty trained, you can even leave him out all day, and put him back into the cage only to sleep and feed. Enjoy your beautiful, intelligent pet for many years to come as some parrots can live up to 70 years and above!

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Bird Cages – Not Just Usual Cages Anymore

Certainly one of the basic things you should be aware of when deciding on becoming a bird owner is offering your bird the correct amount of living space. This may depend on the type of pet bird you’re purchasing. Considering the variety of forms, shades and designs of bird cages available nowadays, you might find yourself confused.

While there may appear to be infinite types of cages out there at present, there are a few particulars that you will want to consider when having a bird cage. These things will help your evaluation of the cages a little better.

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The first rule is that you should decide where this cage is to be located. This will permit you to discover the cage which is the right for the specified area that you prefer. It is important that the place not be anywhere around doors or house windows. Also it needs to be in a lively place in your house in order that there’s continuous movement for your bird. This can provide an enhanced degree of social development.

Secondly, it is to know what size your bird will end up being when full grown. While it’s perfectly acceptable to keep a canary or finch in minor bird cages, bigger birds will require bigger cages in order that there is a lot of area for them to grow. If you do keep a bird in a cage that is much too small, then you definitely can end up on the incorrect end of bitter attitude and an ill-tempered bird. The right bird cage must be one that the pet may walk around in and find a way to fully expand its wings.

Subsequently, you should make sure that you’re using a properly constructed cage. Ensuring this may offer the owner and the bird several years of practical usage. Bird cages which are the very best quality are those which are made from steel.

Raising Chickens for Eggs: Calcium

Raising chickens for eggs is one of the main reasons people raise chickens in the first place. Those who are new to raising chickens for eggs may not be aware of the special dietary needs of the hens. This lack of knowledge can have a profound effect on the quality and number of eggs that your hens lay. In this article, we are going to look at one of the most important issues when it comes to feeding your laying hens: calcium.

Unless you are experienced in preparing your own chicken feed, you should purchase commercial chicken feed. When you visit the feed store you will see that there are many different types of chicken feed. Selecting the right one for your laying hens is important

Among the types you will see are chick starter feed, adult feed, and feed specifically prepared for laying hens. Feed that is prepared for laying hens will have added calcium, and this is the feed you want to give to your hens.

By purchasing a good quality laying feed, you avoid all the confusion and headaches of trying to prepare your own feed. This is the best option for virtually all owners, and especially good for those new to raising laying hens.

As you shop for your laying hen feed, you will also notice that many brands are labeled as “Complete”. This labeling ensures that the remainder of the feed is developed with all of the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that your hens will need.

You may not know it, but the shell of an average egg is nearly ninety-five percent calcium carbonate. This is the main reason your laying hens need that extra calcium in their daily diet. Hens that do not receive this calcium boost will often lay eggs with weak shells and weak chicks inside those shells.

But other problems can arise as well. For instance, a hen that did not get enough calcium may discharge the embryo without any shell at all.

Another issue to consider when raising chickens for eggs is the age of the hen. As your hen ages, she will produce fewer eggs. This is simply nature taking its course. Also, your hen may lay fewer eggs during the hot summer days and during the very cold winter days. Again, this is natural and should not cause alarm.

Some experienced growers who are raising chickens for eggs set up feeding stations that contain ground up oyster shell or special limestone preparations to help get the calcium into the hens. If you buy a good quality chicken feed, you do not have to do this as the feed will have everything you need already in it.

August 2010
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