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  • Why Birds as Pets!!!! June 27, 2011
    Birds as pets are far different from pets as dogs and cats. Still keeping birds can be very rewarding and entertaining. Instead of keeping them in small cages they should be kept in large ones to provide space for them to fly. Rather than keeping four legged pets, birds are far more beneficial. Birds are […]
    birdzirk
  • Portable Poultry Coop – Why Having A Cartable Chickens House Is A Good Move June 18, 2011
    If you’re planning to build a backyard coop, you may want to think about building a mobile chicken coop instead.  It has got a lot of advantages; some of which are enumerated below.   Why a mobile coop?   Mobile chicken houses are simple build, easy to wash and lessens possible issues due to constantly […]
    birdzirk
  • Buy the Best Livestock Supplies in 3 Steps June 17, 2011
    Almost everyone has goals, goals as well as objectives about things they would like to accomplish.  Most people have a list of points we want to accomplish or have.  A lot of individuals want to purchase livestock supplies.  Perhaps you would too. Once you know how, that’s truly much less difficult.  When you first pass […]
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Archive for the ‘Specific Species’ Category

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!

Article Source: ArticleCrop.com

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.

Keeping Budgerigars – One Of Each Sex

By Anna-Marie Stewart

Keeping 2 budgies is always beneficial to the birds themselves, although it may make it harder for you to tame them. If you want to tame them and you have 2, then it’s best to have 2 males. If you really want to keep 2 birds then 2 males are the best option, as they will rarely bicker and fight, whereas 2 females will spend most of their time doing just that.

It’s also totally possible to keep a male and a female in a cage together. There’s one thing you need to be aware of when keeping a male and female though, and that is if they’re given the right opportunities they WILL mate and breed. I suggest you think very hard about what your plans are for your birds before deciding on one of each sex.

Do you want her to have chicks? If you do, then provide her with a nestbox (you can buy them pretty cheap at pet stores) and put a handful of wood shavings inside it (also available at pet stores)

If they’ve mated successfully, then she’ll start showing an interest in the nestbox, possibly within the next few days, possibly later. It usually takes about 10 days from a successful mating to when the first egg is laid. The hen should then lay an egg every other day, and the clutch of eggs can be anywhere between 1-8 eggs (sometimes even more).

Ask the petstore for eggfood and millet, as the birds will need extra strength to help them rear any chicks they might have. If the eggs are fertile they will start hatching between 18-23 days of being laid.

You don’t need to feed the chicks at all, the father will feed the mother, and she will regurgitate the food for the chicks when they get a bit bigger. At first they will be fed by her with something called ‘crop-milk’ basically the same as mothers milk, but in bird form ;)

The chicks will start getting ready to leave the nestbox somewhere around the age of 28-35 days old, the father will feed them for a little while longer and they’ll eventually start feeding themselves. Provide the extras (eggfood and millet) all through the period of mating, laying and rearing, and also while the chicks are learning to become independent.

If you don’t want the hen to lay another round after the first chicks have hatched, then remove the nestbox as soon as the chicks leave the nest.

If you just want to keep one of each sex and not have them mate and breed, the solution is pretty simple. Don’t give them a nestbox. Budgies will very rarely, if ever, mate without a nest to lay eggs in.

Anna-Marie Stewart keeps and breeds pet budgerigars.
Visit Adorable Budgies for information, pictures and forum http://adorablebudgies.co.uk

This article is available for reprint in your opt-in ezine, web site or ebook. You MUST agree not to make any changes to the article and the RESOURCE BOX MUST be included.
(c) Anna-Marie Stewart All Rights Reserved

Article Source: EzineArticles

Raising Chicks: The Basics

For anyone interested in raising chicks, the process is not hard or complicated. However, there are certain issues that you have to address if you want to be truly successful. Let’s take a look at the basics of raising chicks.

There are basically two ways to get a chick out of its egg. You can use laying hens who will sit on the egg until it hatches or you can use incubators and brooding boxes. The choice is up to you, but many prefer to use the incubator and brooder box this allows for much more control.

One of the keys to successfully raising chicks is preparation. Having the tools you need before needing them is crucial. You will need, at a minimum:

A Secure Chicken Coop

An Incubator

An Egg Tray

Automatic Egg Turner (optional)

Heat Lamp and Thermometer

Brooding Boxes

Shallow Food and Water Trays

Pine Shavings or Newspapers to Line the Brooder Box

You should set your incubator temperature to 99.5 degrees two days before you expect to put the eggs into it. It is also a good idea to make sure the automatic egg turner works properly. It normally takes about 3 weeks for chicks to hatch, and much of that time will be in the incubator so it must work correctly.

It is very important to remember to put the eggs into the turner with the small end of the egg down. The larger end of the egg contains the air sac which the chick will need later on to breathe.

It is also important to monitor the temperature daily. Do not allow the heat inside the incubator to get above 99.5 as this may kill the chick inside the egg.

Some incubators have water troughs. Fill this as directed and keep them filled throughout the hatching period. Make sure you follow the instructions as some incubators should not have the outer trough filled for the first couple of weeks.

On the 18th day, you want to remove the egg turner and place the eggs on the mesh wire within the incubator. You will not turn the eggs any longer and should not disturb them at all until the chicks hatch.

Another important part of raising chicks is the brooder box. Now is the time to get it ready for the newly hatch chicks. If you buy a brooder box, follow the instructions. If you do not buy one, make one out of a cardboard box with some pine shavings or newspaper on the bottom.

Place your food and water trays inside the box. Chicks should be fed special chick food which is smaller in size that adult feed. Make sure they have plenty of clean water and that the heating lamp is left on and set to the properly temperature.

Raising chicks is not hard; it just takes some preparation and monitoring. Once you have raised a few sets, you will get the hang of it easily and enjoy adding to your flock for many years to come.

Poultry House Blueprints: Perfect Security From Dangerous Elements

A good chicken’s house can protect the chickens from hazardous elements including the weather, predators, and injury.

This is how to do it:

Protection from Weather

A dry, draft-free house is needed in poultry. This can be done by building a relatively draft-free poultry house with windows and doors which can on occasion be opened for ventilation when necessary. Build the chicken house on high, well-drained areas. Thru this chickens plan, prolonged wetness and water saturation of the floor inside the coop and in the runs outside can be prevented. Let the front of the coop, the windows, and the outside run face to the south too. This permits the sun to constantly cozy and warm the coop. To keep the humidity level in the coop as small as possible, allow an adequate level of space per bird too.

Protection from Predators

The only way to give protection to the chickens from predators is to keep the chickens house totally confined with fence and covered runs. When planning a poultry house, consider laying a concrete floor, and secure the wall with one or two concrete blocks. This prevents predators from digging under the walls and the floors. When the coop is opened, windows and doors must be securely covered with heavy-gauge mesh wire or screening.

With outside runs, bury the wire into the ground along the pen border with 12 inches depth and toe the fence outward about 6 inches. Through this way, it will help to stop most predators from digging under the fence. By toeing the fence outward and burying it, the predator will dig down right into more fencing.

To deter predators, a few of the people run electrical fencing around the outside of their pens 4 inches off the ground and about one foot from the primary fence.

Protection from Injury

Plan your chicken’s house to prevent any probable injury to your chickens. Take out any loose or ragged wire, nails, or other sharp-edged objects from the coop. Eliminate all the areas apart from perches, where the chickens could perch more than four feet above the floor. Get rid of any perching areas like window sills, nest box tops, or electrical cords whenever possible. These measures could stop any injury to you or your chickens and may prevent damage to the house, also.

BUILD CHICKEN COOPS: Learn how to build a chicken coop and much more info on Portable Chicken Coops

What Food to Feed Chickens?

Many of those new to raising chickens may be confused about what to feed chickens. To be clear, the audience for this article is those who are raising their own backyard chickens, in their own chicken coops and hen houses. Commercial hatcheries are a different story altogether and not addressed in this article.

If you have done any research at all about the feeding of chickens you already know that there are many products available and just as many arguments about which product is best. The good news is, for those new to raising chickens, feeding your chickens a well-balanced diet is easier than you may have been led to believe.

The two things you need to keep in mind when selecting the right feed for your chickens are: age and purpose.

Most feed stores and farmer’s co-op’s will carry a variety of feeds. The specific feed you buy should be based on where the chicken is in terms of its development, as well as what you want the chicken to be or do. For example:

You can find chicken feed that is specifically designed as a starter feed for young chicks (age) that you plan to raise as brooders (purpose). Chicks need a diet high in protein to help boost their growth. You can also find feed that is specifically designed for hens you wish to use as egg laying hens. Laying hens often need more calcium, and this type of chicken feed provides that added nutrient to them.

The bottom line is until you have gained enough experience and confidence to mix your own feed (should you choose to do so), commercial chicken feed is just fine, as long as you buy according to age and purpose.

One note that may surprise you is that it is not recommended that you add nutritional supplements to the commercial chicken feed you buy. High-quality chicken feed will often have the word “complete” attached to its brand name. This means that a specific set of criteria have been applied to this particular type of chicken feed. If you add to the formula, even with the best of intentions, you may actually impact the digestion of the feed and cause harm to the bird.

In addition to feeding your chickens the proper food, your chicken coop or hen house should always provide some means of delivering clean, fresh water for your birds. Many people do not realize it but the chicken anatomy is much like the human anatomy in that the body is made up mostly of water. Access to clean, fresh water, whether it is provided inside or outside of the chicken coop or hen house, is an essential element to raising healthy fowl. Lack of water, especially in hot weather can be lethal to your chickens.

Should you notice that your birds are not drinking as much as they should, check the temperature of the water. Chickens are notorious for not drinking if the water is either too cold or too hot. Fresh water must be provided daily, and the trough must be kept clean of droppings and other debris.

Many people consider adding a free-range run to the chicken coop to allow their birds to eat from grassy areas. This is fine as long as you understand that your chickens will also need access to at least some high-quality chicken feed. Most grassy areas and pastures will not contain all of the nutrients that your birds need, and thus those nutrients must be added through chicken feed.

When you are planning your chicken coop or hen house, remember to think about both feeding and watering your birds. Many chicken coop plans will have already taken these into consideration and you can use those as a baseline guide for your new chicken coop.

Chicken Coop Plans – 7 Steps to a Superior Chicken Coop

You have decided to take the leap and start raising your own backyard chickens

Constructing a chicken house for your feathered friends can save you money and let you personalize the house to fit your needs. Prior to hammering that first nail, you should make sure your chicken house plans take into account these seven important factors:

1. Size: You should allow enough space for the chickens. For standard chickens 3-4 feet square inside the coop and 6-10 square feet within the run is recommended. For bantam chickens you can get away with 2-3 square feet indoors and 8 feet square outside per chicken.

2. Lighting: Chickens need light to be able to lay their eggs. Where possible try and face the coop into the sun and install windows to bring in the light and also the warmth.

3. Ventilation: Your chicken house must be well ventilated to let the fresh air in, but not drafty. If high winds can be a problem, consider building the coop in a sheltered location.

4. Insulation: Dont’ forget to take into consideration temperature changes. In cold climates your chicken house will likely need to be insulated.

5. Feeders and Waterers: The feeders and waterers need to be easy to get to by both man and bird. Think about installing automatic waterers to get a constant supply of fresh water.

6. Nesting Boxes: If raising chickens for eggs, you should have nesting boxes for the hens to lay in. Allow one nesting box per two hens. The hens don’t enjoy being crowded when laying!

7. Predators: Chickens are tasty, not just to us but to a wide variety of predators. Make sure your chicken house and run are safe on every side including below the ground and above. Don’t forget the burrowing and soaring predators! Common predators include coyotes, skunks, foxes and hawks. Wire mesh fencing is often employed to keep the chickens in and predators out. Ensure when you are installing fencing to dig down not less than one foot to guard your chickens from burrowing predators.

It is vital when constructing a chicken coop to possess a written blueprint to work with. If your chicken house plan takes into account the above seven factors, you will be on your way to building a safe, secure home for your chicken flock.

How To Teach Your Parrot Not To Bite

By Azmi Adnan

Learning how to teach your parrot not to bite is one of the most important skills for a pet parrot owner. However it takes a lot of time and commitment. Given the right circumstances, parrots can learn a lot of things because they are intelligent birds. Repetition will teach your bird to stop biting and your friends and family will enjoy its presence.

One of the main reasons why parrots behave this way may be that they are being left alone by themselves for far too long. This causes them to become withdrawn and would retaliate when approached. Socialize your parrot by introducing it to your family members, friends and even to your other pets to build confidence of being in the company of others. It is natural instincts for a parrot to cause hurt when it feels that its territory is being threatened by strangers. With adequate time, your bird will settle down and feel at home.

As an alternative, give your parrot a toy to nibble at. If it refuses to let go of your fingers, give it a blow on its face as a sign that you disapproves of the bird biting you. Do this over and over again each time this happens and your pet bird will get the message.

Verbally tell your parrot ‘no’ and place the bird back in its cage as a form of punishment. Cover the cage and leave it alone for some time. The parrot, being an intelligent bird, will sense that it is being disciplined.

Observe your bird’s behaviour. African Grey parrots, especially, are temperamental and if you find that your parrot is moody, leave it alone. Just like humans, there are times when it needs to be by itself and not be forced to learn new tricks. Be sensitive to your bird and the biting can be stopped.

Take your parrot to new surroundings for a change, such as different rooms in the house, the balcony or outside on the lawn. Imagine being at the same location all the time, your parrot will lose it sense of balance. Let it enjoy new company and breathe new air. In adapting to different environments, your parrot will become less defensive and unlikely to protect itself by hurting others.

Lookout for mood changes, frustrations and irritations in your bird and avoid coming close to it when this happens. Let the bird overcome this behaviour with time. When your parrot hurts you on the finger, try not to show any reaction because it may do that again just to see the same reaction from you. Gently remove yourself from the situation. Do not retaliate by shaking the bird.

Repeat your training and be patient. Keeping a pet parrot is a lifelong commitment but it will benefit both you and your bird. Your pet bird will learn to stop biting and you will learn to be patient and build character.

About the Author: Azmi Adnan is a writer and a bird enthusiast. Subscribe to his newsletter for fresh video clips on parrots and other bird species, ezines and interesting bird stories at his website http://www.power-to-live.com/parrot.html

Article Source: EzineArticles

Many Bird Owners Wonder Whether They Should Trim or File Their Pet Bird’s Beak

By:leezaliza

Many bird owners wonder whether they should trim or file their pet bird’s beak. We as pet owners like to know we are doing the right thing by them, after all we are wholly responsible for each and every animal that we have. It is important to keep an eye on any changes in your bird’s beak, from over growing, under growing, discoloured, cracked, changing shape, becoming soft, becoming brittle, too shiny, improper alignment of top and bottom beaks etc, etc. Anything that is changing from what is normal for your bird is best to be checked out by an avian veterinarian. Don’t wait until it is too late, as some problems are caused by diet and can be overcome quite easily, just by changing or adding different foods and introducing items that can keep the bird’s beak in tip top shape.

Our Quaker Parrot, Charlie, loves to chew on branches from trees that we place around the house, both indoors and outside. Once he has chewed all of the outside layer from them we replace them with new branches. He loves to climb all over the branches and chews to his hearts content, whilst it is very messy it also keeps him amused. We have different shapes and sizes of branches so as he has to open his beak in different ways. We also give him different textures of food, both raw vegetables and fruit along with bird seed that we purchase from good pet stores. We have a cuttlebone placed here and there but he is not very keen on them, along with calcium bells. Charlie is still only young, about one year old, but we are very aware that any bird can have a beak problem, so we keep a careful eye on him. Even when he is on our shoulders on our clothes protector, a bird bib we give him things to chew on.

As I said before many pet bird owners ask themselves should they trim or file their bird’s beak, well yes, sometimes it is necessary, but as always prevention is better than cure. Try to give your bird, whether it is a Quaker parrot, Budgerigar, Cockatiel, Parrot, Canary, Parakeet just to name a few, a variety of items including food that will help control their beak and keep them in a healthy state. If you are at all worried about your bird’s beak don’t hesitate to take it to a veterinarian, an avian veterinarian if possible. The veterinarian is the best person to trim any bird’s beak and will show you how you can file it yourself if you ask them. If you want to trim the beak yourself please check it out with the vet first as there is a right way and a wrong way to do it. You can cause the beak to bleed and it can be very painful to your pet bird. You don’t won’t to hurt your pet bird, after all. as well We believe that clipping both wings is the best thing for our Quaker Parrot.

After purchasing a Quaker Parrot and getting tired of all the washing that goes with sitting him on our shoulders, I designed and made a bird bib to protect our clothing. The bird bib has been very successful in keeping our clothes free from bird droppings. Please feel free to visit our website at http://www.tweetyenterprises.com

About the Author

After purchasing a Quaker Parrot and getting tired of all the washing that goes with sitting him on our shoulders, I designed and made a bird bib to protect our clothing. The bird bib has been very successful in keeping our clothes free from bird droppings. http://www.tweetyenterprises.com

Article Source: http://www.articlealley.com/article_1630235_54.html

Building a Chicken Coop for Newbies

You may be feeling anxiety about building a chicken coop. Plans sometimes intimidate with the tools they require. You can get a simple version called Chicken DIY Guides, a guide for anyone to use. They wrote a building guide to make your project a success.

The step-by-step directives make the plans easy to read. It is surprising but there are no expensive power tools necessary. They avoided expert-only carpentry methods and wrote with the beginner in mind. When you get ready to start to build a hen house, you should purchase the recommended tools.

People ask is Chicken DIY Guides a scam, but its main priority is to make the most outstanding chicken coop building instructions on the market. The authors of Chicken DIY Guides spent time looking through hundreds of online building plans and developed the best ones for beginners. When you buy Chicken DIY Guides you can be sure you are getting the best product available on the internet.

The best information was condensed into a singular and easy to follow guide. With the fully illustrated process, even the person who fears building projects can quickly learn how to build a hen house in their backyard. The least technically inclined people can follow the guide with success.

This detailed “do it yourself guide” will give you the confidence you will need for exactly how to get started. Elevations, Step-by-Step pictures, and diagrams show you how the building is done. Access the Video Library whenever you want to see an example of the building.

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