Substrate, perches, nests and feeders: equipping your Parrot cage - African Parrot Grey health diet personality intelligence and care

Substrate, perches, nests and feeders: equipping your Parrot cage


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The equipment of the cage is an essential step when buying a parrot, although it can be difficult for the owner to navigate through all the existing equipment. The setting up of new perches allows us to personalize its cage or its aviary but also to stimulate the bird.

Feeder Bird Intelligence



Equipping your Parrot cage, The perches must be as varied as possible in diameter or material (HOLLAND 1962): wood, rope, tree branch, etc., everything can be used and the more the perches will be varied, the more interesting it will be for the bird and the risk of pododermatitis or gout is reduced. In addition, perches can be fixed or swing to stimulate the bird’s balance. Finally, it may be interesting to spread the perches throughout the aviary and space them as far as possible to encourage the bird to fly or climb along the walls of his cage or aviary.

Nests Parrot cage


Perches Parrot cage

equipping your Parrot cage

Equipping your Parrot cage

 


As for the substrate, different possibilities are offered to the owner who must choose according to what he prefers: the practicality of cleaning or aesthetic appearance, both unfortunately not always compatible:

  • Newspaper or mattress: not very aesthetic but has the advantage of being able to be changed every day very easily. Not suitable for overly destructive birds that may tear and swallow it.
  • Sand or small gravels: certainly decorative and rather easy for cleaning (just remove the droppings and contaminated sand), it is discouraged because it can be easily ingested in large quantities by parrots, increasing the risk of ‘impactions.
  • Bark or large gravel: aesthetic and very interesting for burrowing parrots who spend time on the ground in search of food, but not always easy to clean.
  • No substrate: not recommended because dry droppings can be very difficult to clean, thus promoting the development of infectious agents.
  • Straw or hay: absolutely not recommended despite the aesthetic aspect and enriching for the bird dust from hay or straw promotes the development of respiratory diseases such as Aspergillosis.

equipping your Parrot cage

Equipping your Parrot cage

Military macaw (A militaries) exploring its bark substrate in search of food

The last elements essential to the construction of a cage are the feeders and waterers. Here again, you have to adapt your equipment to your bird while respecting some basic instructions:

  • Prefer metal objects for the most powerful birds when plastic is enough for the smallest parrots
  • When there are several parrots, ensure that each bird has access to food to limit conflicts in the group (long feeders or at least one feeder per individual)
  •  Feeders must be placed high to prevent rodents from using them. Perches or wire mesh should be placed so that parrots can easily be used
  • Be careful not to place feeders and troughs under nests or perches to prevent droppings from falling into them.
  • Adapt the cage closure system to the intelligence of the bird: many parrots understand how to open their cage and run the risk of running away. The owners must, therefore, redouble ingenuity to keep the cage closed (key lock, carabiner screw …)
  • Water and food should be changed at least once a day. Indeed, parrots waste a lot and love to soak their food in their drinking water, so messing up very quickly.

Feeders Parrot cage



equipping your Parrot cage

The owner can then add other elements in his cage or aviary, such as plants (that parrots will quickly tend to destroy!) Nontoxic, or even nests if he wishes to have a reproduction. In addition, the construction and maintenance of the nest is a great occupation for Psittacidae (HOLLAND 1962) and can participate in the social functioning of the group (see Figure 33). The type and shape of the nest depend on the species and it is advisable to inquire on a case by case basis.


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