Budgie Bird Cages Cage Locks Aviary Building And Cleaning Them All

Blue budgie parakeet sits at the exit of the cage. Birds
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What size cage is the minimum size for one small budgie?

The experts have all sorts of rules on proper cage sizing.

“It needs to be this size and shape in height”.

“In needs to have levels on this and that”.

“The bar spacing MUST be…….”

So here’s my deal with the experts

When you can tell me how to

  • Stop parrot screaming
  • Stop parrot plucking
  • Stop prolific egg laying
  • Stop filling up bird rescues

You can tell me how big my cage needs to be.

Until then my 15 years of selling, assembling and placing birds in bird cages has lead me to believe that

there ain’t no right size birdcage.

There are certain rules that we follow like our 26 inch wide small flight aviary is too small to house two additional budgies bringing the census up to six.

It’s a no-brainer “they” need a bigger cage. Doone and done.

Beyond that there are birds that I know that have nothing but a sleeping cage they enter nightly.

They go to sleep at birdie bedtime and cage doors are opened by the humans in the household at a precise hour every early morning.

The birds are out of the cage all day until birdie bedtime, free to roam around and test their boundaries daily.

Conversely common sense would dictate that you if you have a larger parrot like an African grey that you acquired even though you knew that you were gone 8 to 10 hours a day, a large of cage would be more appropriate, offering the the bird more choices to eat, play and learn.

Lovebirds can do well in smaller cages 18 x 18 – 20 x 20 IF they live in the cage all day.

Parrotlets, similar size to lovebirds but requires a cage more suited for an African grey (bar spacing aside).

We know this having assited in the housing of quite a number of parrotlets over the years – I call it our unGoogle-able organic knowledge base.

By the way we detest grilles as the bird cage floor.

We remove them or cover them with newspaper that is replaced once or twice daily depending upon the bird(s).

Exposed grates/grilles regardless of powder coating thickness will be the first things that rust in a cage because of the constant interaction of water and fecal matter.

We actually keep our food dishes on a covered grate in one cage and on the floor (newspaper covered refuse tray) of the budgies cage.

Budgies are ground eaters, it’s natural but we have our Senegal’s food dish on the floor so when she decides she doesn’t like this or that morsel it doesn’t get as far as that top sheet of newspaper

Feel free to reach out with cage bird environmental questions any time.

 

How should I set up my bird cage and how often should I clean it?

 

I own a Green Cheek Conure.

He has a pretty large cage, not sure of the exact dimensions, but I’m very confused on how to set it up, I hear that people put newspaper to line the cage with but are you supposed to put that on top of the litter or under it?

Also, how often should I change the litter?

 

We remove the grate in our cages and only use newspaper we can easily refresh daily. We don’t like “litters” as they promote mold growth possibly leading to aspergillosis plus it hides poop which is essential to inspect on a daily basis.

 

At least 3 types of perches, grooming wood and rope. A rope perch should be installed close to the top of the cage for the bird to sleep on preventing arthritic feet. The grooming perch should be installed by the food dish as the bird is active while eating and will groom toe nails and beak on it.


Remove the long perch that came with the cage and replace with something like a manzanita (wood) perch having uneven surfaces challenging the bird’s feet.

 

We like thermal perches for all our birds so we heat the bird not the home. Cuttlebone is really only necessary for females and although it helps beaks there are better beak conditioners like lava rock.

 

Most importantly a full spectrum light 6 inches above the cage on a timer. 12 hours on 12 ours off with no respect for daylight savings time. This helps keep the birds circadian rhythms in tune and will reduce hormonal behavior.

 

Get your bird DNA tested (we offer it for $18 test) so you know what you are dealing with. Sex is important to know. Breeding activity in hens coupled with a molt can be a big drain of caloric resources and nutrition should be adjusted during these stressful periods

 

Use the smooth dowel rod that came with the cage for “stick training” Make sure it is your bird’s “friend” so oher people can handle the bird if you’re not around and something you can use to fish the bird out from behind a dresser or refrigerator.

 

Think of toys as the “leaves of the trees” you GCC would be living in the wild. you want wood, shredding and at least on interactive toy all in the upper 1/3 of the cage.

 

Toys should be placed around the perimeter of the cage for easy accessibility also to provide private for the bird. Include at least one swing that doesn’t bang any other accessories. The cage in the video The cage needs at least 10 more toys in the upper third portion.

 

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=X4yG7a3fsu0

 

I clean our 2 birdcages every 24 to 48 hours that way it doesn’t become a big mess nor a huge chore

 

Seeking lock proof bird cage doors

 

I have two red fronted macaws and when they are out of their cage the male takes off the door handles. I am looking for two cages that have lock proof doors or unable to take apart. Also a play stand.

 

Kudos on the red fronted macaws Nancy – unfortunately there are no bird proof doors because of the intelligence and strength of these magnificent creatures.

 

Some solutions I have seen are padlocks that fit around the doorframe and I’ve experimented with heavy-duty magnets placed at the bottom of the door opening.

 

You situation begs the question as to why the birds are taking the door handles off? Are you offering enough enrichment alternatives to take their minds off their enclosure?

 

We feel a bird cage should have so many toys that you can see the birds which provides both enrichment and privacy. Feel free to send a picture of you cage set up to We_Speak_Bird@WindyCityParrot.com for more specific recommendations.

 

Regarding the play stand here’s a link with some recommended stands suitable for large parrots. They may really enjoy these Java wood trees which are very soft and the feet and quite durable http://www.windycityparrot.com/Wood_c_717.html

 

This stand http://goo.gl/X0UvUs is ideally suited for longtailed parrots and has plenty of room for two birds

 

Mitchr

 

The experts have all sorts of rules on proper cage sizing.

“It needs to be this size and shape in height”.

“In needs to have levels on this and that”.

“The bar spacing MUST be…….”

So here’s my deal with the experts

When you can tell me how to

  • Stop parrot screaming
  • Stop parrot plucking
  • Stop prolific egg laying
  • Stop filling up bird rescues

You can tell me how big my cage needs to be.

Until then my 15 years of selling, assembling and placing birds in bird cages has lead me to believe that there ain’t no right size birdcage.

There are certain rules that we follow like our 26 inch wide small flight aviary is too small to house two additional budgies bringing the census up to six.

It’s a no-brainer “they” need a bigger cage. Doone and done.

Beyond that there are birds that I know that have nothing but a sleeping cage they enter nightly.

They go to sleep at birdie bedtime and cage doors are opened by the humans in the household at a precise hour every early morning.

The birds are out of the cage all day until birdie bedtime, free to roam around and test their boundaries daily.

Conversely common sense would dictate that you if you have a larger parrot like an African grey that you acquired even though you knew that you were gone 8 to 10 hours a day, a large of cage would be more appropriate, offering the the bird more choices to eat, play and learn.

Lovebirds can do well in smaller cages 18 x 18 – 20 x 20 IF they live in the cage all day.

Parrotlets, similar size to a lovebird but requires a cage more suited for an African grey.

We know this having assited in the housing of quite a number of parrotlets over the years – I call it our unGoogle-able organic knowledge base.

By the way we detest grillesas the bird cage floor.

We remove them or cover them with newspaper that is replaced once or twice daily depending upon the bird(s).

Expose grates regardless of the quality of powder coating will be the first things that rust in a cage because of the constant interaction of water and fecal matter.

We actually keep our food dishes on a covered grates in one cage and on the floor of the cage for budgies.

Budgies are ground eaters, it’s natural but we have our Senegal’s food dish on the floor so when she decides she doesn’t like this or that morsel it doesn’t get as far as that top sheet of newspaper

Feel free to reach out with cage bird environmental questions any time.

 

build outdoor aviary

 

You will want non-coated galvanized steel wire for the cage – no thinner than 16 ga May19 g if it’s just finches. The floor should be solid so that you can hose it down.  A porous substrate like gravel will absorb the bird droppings over time and will have to be dug out.

 

If you can’t use concrete you can use ceramic, brick pavers or even linoleum.

For free-standing aviaries not attached to the home you’ll need a secondary safety lock area so only one door is open at a time preventing the birds escape.

 

You can easily heat  the aviary using clamp-on lights but they must have ceramic sockets and being outside you’ll want a higher wattage infrared bulb along lines of 150 watts  – 4 at least

 

Keep in mind that if the birds  are out full time they are easy prey from animals that can and will  rip apart the lighter steel wire.

 

That said an outer layer of 1/2-inch-by-1/2-inch wire may keep the birds safe from possums, rats and cats. Smaller wire may prevent snakes and mice from gaining access to the aviary.

 

It’s best to have a covered roof so the birds don’t fry in the sun.

 

Try to make food and water dishes accessible from the outside of the cage to reduce the number of times you need to enter the cage.  It’s best to have a minimum of 2 two feeder cups for food and two cups for water so larger birds don’t starve out the weaker ones.

 

If the birds are not to be segregated by sex make sure that you offer finch appropriate nests and build privacy areas  where weaker birds can seek refuge from more aggressive birds in the big bird cage.

 

Try to place perches and other aviary accessories so when birds poop from a higher perch or aviary accessory like a bird toy or ladder the poop always falls the aviary floor. Not another accessory below which will reduce daily cleaning time

 

Also try to suspend perches so they are not using the cage wall for support. This will help the possibility of predators getting sleeping birds

 

If possible casters are great addition so that the aviary can be moved into another part of the home or garage for heat and safety

 


Also published on Medium.

Author:

He's handled a 1000 birds of numerous species when they would visit their monthly birdie brunch in the old Portage Park (Chicago, IL) facility. The one with the parrot playground. Mitch has written and published more than 1100 articles on captive bird care. He's met with the majority of  CEO's and business owners for most brands in the pet bird space and does so on a regular basis. He also constantly interacts with avian veterinarians and influencers globally.

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