What factors affect the lifespan of parrots?

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One day I’ll stop apologizing for stepping on toes. Although I have great respect for my esteemed associate who answered this question previously (on Quora)  I have a totally different point of view.

The most influential factor in determining the lifespan of any companion bird in captivity, in and of itself – is daylight and the daily duration of light vs darkness.

50 million years of hard wiring for an animal to believe that he or she can go where they want anytime changes the moment they occupy a bird cage.

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The bird of time: cognition and the avian biological (circadian) clock

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Front Mol Neurosci. 2012; 5: 32.
Published online 2012 Mar 22. Prepublished online 2012 Feb 1. doi:  10.3389/fnmol.2012.00032
PMCID: PMC3309970The bird of time: cognition and the avian biological clock
 
abstract

Avian behavior and physiology are embedded in time at many levels of biological organization. Biological clock function in birds is critical for sleep/wake cycles, but may also regulate the acquisition of place memory, learning of song from tutors, social integration, and time-compensated navigation.

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Let’s Talk About Bird Poop – It Says What Your Bird Can’t

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So let’s talk about poop:-) What got me thinking about the topic is a recent e-mail from a customer considering buying an HQ bird cage. She bought a Molucaan Cockatoo from a pet shop 16 years ago. She’s been shopping there for 16 years and last year bought a dome top birdcage from them.

After one year the bottom tray of the cage had started rusting out. She talked about having bought all of her supplies from this particular pet shop including walnut shells which are used as bedding in the bottom of the cage. She wasn’t sure of the make of the cage.

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Bird safe no stick cookware alternatives

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I am long overdue getting appropriate bird safe cookware to use around my African Grey. I’ve wanted the Calphalon set for years. Do you know anything about it being safe. I get a little confused. I know “Teflon” is not good, but just what is meant by non-stick? Is all “non’stick” unsafe around birds?

Thank you for your time. KATHY

Hi Kathy

Calphalon nonstick surfaces do use a PTFE (non stick) coating. Calphalon is Teflon free but that’s because they don’t use the Teflon brand for their coating so it’s really semantics.

Both are similar in that they use PTFE in their non-stick surfaces which is harmful to animals and humans alike to various degrees. The fumes of an over heated PTFE pan can kill a bird in minutes 3 rooms away

That leaves 3 ways to achieve a kitchen full of bird safe cookware, the first being “ceramic” coated cookware.

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Caring for 2 senior lovebirds

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I have 2 love birds that are approaching 20 years of age – Help Scout

Beth W replied Feb 5, 12:42pm

I have two love birds that are approaching 20 years of age and was wondering if there are special nutrition or habitat changes I should make for them. 

Mitch replied Feb 8, 10:09pm

Beth – do you know their sex?

Beth W replied Feb 9, 6:29pm

They are both male peach faced love birds, one is a year older than the other. The older bird is having problems with his balance occasionally.

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Zoo Med 2008: Psittacine Medicine (2008)

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OCW Zoological Medicine 2008
Psittacine Medicine (2008)
G. Kaufman, DVM
Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University

1. Learning Objectives and Review

This section pulls together the main diseases and health issues of psittacines, representing the major group of birds seen in pet bird veterinary practice. Color coded topics indicate learning objectives that the student should become familiar with. Cases will be presented in class to illustrate these topics.

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5 Ways to reduce hormonal bird behavior before you see the avian vet

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Hypothetical – a 21st century genie sits down next you on a park bench. He looks pretty normal and explains that the whole genie thing has evolved along with modern society.

The dapper young lad named Gene (really?) goes on to say;

“The new rules are that you still get three wishes but “me” the genie decides what they are? It’ll be fun.

Wish number one is from this point forward you will have the ability to fly.

It gets better.

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These Indian parrots are opium addicts

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Jaipur: Poppy farmers in Rajasthan’s Chittorgarh district are facing a unique problem.

Come March, parrots descend on their fields in large numbers to slurp on the milk oozing out of cuts made in the pods to ripen the yield.

“Once they have their fill they sit on trees and sleep there for hours. Some of them can be seen circling or staggering before falling from the trees due to overdose of opium,” says Kishore Kumar Dhaker, a poppy farmer in Sukwara village of Chittorgarh.

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Scenic bird food offers outstanding nutrition for any species of caged bird

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Editor’s note: we all like variety. They just opened a supermarket not far from us called Pete’s – it is 55,000 ft.² with not only groceries but prepared foods and salads.

This is what we demand as humans which is why we offer so many brands and varieties of bird food. 

Small birds can live 15 to 20 years – larger ones 40 to 60 years, some even longer. Don’t you think it’s important that your birds should enjoy variety in their diets for the decades they are going to be around?

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Why are veterinarians are injecting this poison into our birds?

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File under “Our vets are injecting this sh#t into our birds – really”?

The reason I bring this up is an article that came across my desktop recently having to do with a drug called “Lupron”. Popcorn our cockatiel received two injections (at $50 per shot) over her 12 visits with our vet.

I read about it a lot on Facebook – Lupron is used to reduce egg laying and calm hormonal changes in birds. It’s use is widespread in avian medicine. It is also available for cats and dogs.

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Nutrition of Psittacines (Parrot Family)

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Nutrition of Psittacines (Parrot Family) Client Information Series™
Th is information is designed as a means of communication between veterinarians and clients who are concerned about their pet bird’s nutritional needs. Diet, nutrient requirements, and feeding are discussed. If you have any questions, be sure to ask your veterinarian to answer them for you.

Birds are divided into 27 orders, varying from high-fl ying Falconiformes, such as the bald eagle, to the Struthioniformes, such as the ostrich, that do not fl y at all. Most pet birds are found among the Psittaciformes (psittacines: parrotsfamily), Passeriformes (perching birds), Columbiformes (pigeon family), and Galliformes (chicken-like birds).

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Bird chop vs commercial bird food blends – what’s best for my bird?

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I talk a lot about avian digestive systems and respiratory systems but it’s been awhile since we talked about feathers. Generally, the birds that we keep as pets have anywhere from 5000 to 7000 feathers. Waterfowl like certain species of ducks can have more than 11,000. Yes, scientists have actually counted them.

From Wikipedia we learn:

Feathers are among the most complex integumentary system appendages found in vertebrates and are formed in tiny follicles in the epidermis, or outer skin layer, that produces keratin proteins.

The β-keratins in feathers, beaks, and the claws, scales, and shells of reptiles — are composed of protein strands hydrogen-bonded into β-pleated sheets, which are then further twisted and crosslinked by disulfide bridges into structures even tougher than the α-keratins of mammalian hair, horns, and hoof.

β-keratin or beta-keratin is a protein in the keratin family. β-keratin is rich in stacked β pleated sheets. Keratin is one of a family of fibrous structural proteins. Keratin is the protein that protects epithelial cells from damage or stress.

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