Tips for Keeping Your Pet Birds Warm in Winter

As the weather cools down, it’s important to remember that birds need additional care in winter. Many of our exotic and pet bird breeds are originally from warm, tropical climates and cold temperatures can be a health challenge. Here are a few guidelines for pet bird owners to keep in mind during cooler temperatures that will help them keep their pet birds healthy and happy.

Bird owners should move the cage to a draft free location, away from windows and doors. Moving your bird’s cage to a central location in the home can make a big difference in keeping deadly drafts and cold air away from sensitive birds. Shrink-wrap insulation kits can be used on windows and unused doorways in winter to keep cold air out and warm air in. Increasing the humidity indoors in winter is also good for birds, eliminating dryness and excess dander.

Remember that birds are sensitive to smoke and fumes that can come from wood, gas or kerosene heaters. Some electric heaters are treated with a non-stick coating, which can create fumes that are deadly to birds. Some radiator-style electric heaters can be effective, but be sure to check on possibly harmful coatings.

Bird owners should definitely have a cage cover on hand. Covering the cage at night will help keep birds cozy. Some birds enjoy snugglies and snoozies to help keep them warm at night. Heat lamps can be used, and infrared bulbs will create a glow that does not interfere with the bird’s sleep cycle. It’s important to choose only a bird-safe heat lamp recommended for avian use. Pay attention to the bulbs used in the heat lamp – any bulbs coated with polytetrafluoroethylene can emit toxic fumes when overheated. There are also ceramic heating elements that can be used for birds – from those that clamp onto the cage to heat panels that are placed around the cage. These are specifically designed for animal and avian use. Infrared heat panels that attach to the cage are also an energy-efficient way to keep your bird cozy this winter.

In addition to keeping your bird warm, you’ll want to ensure that heating your home doesn’t result in a lack of humidity. If so, there are a few simple things you can do to provide the proper conditions for your bird. Regular baths, showers or light misting should be continued throughout the winter months. You can also increase humidity in the home by using a vaporizer or humidifier designed for birds. Other options include placing shallow pans of water on radiators or in the oven when you’re pre-heating it, or simply leaving the bathroom door open when you shower to allow the steam into the house.

Feeding your bird a healthy, vitamin-rich diet throughout the year will help boost its immune system and stay healthier despite changes in temperature. Bird owners should make sure the winter diet includes plenty of fruits and vegetables to maintain optimal health.

Of course, keeping a watchful eye on pet birds throughout the winter is important. As you make changes to your bird’s environment, be on the lookout for signs of overheating, such as panting, extended neck or holding the wings away from the body. Also keep an eye out for signs of any health problems – exposure to cold temperatures can lower the bird’s immunity and result in illness. At any time of year, simple bird care and monitoring will ensure that pet birds stay healthy and happy.

Top Tips For Cleaning A Bird Aviary

A bird aviary in your backyard can do wonders to the overall ambiance of the area. This can be situated within a garden as part of the design or a focal point. Many people who love to keep and breed various species of birds will tell you that this is no easy hobby to take. You will need to keep this enclosure clean at all times to ensure the health and safety of the birds and their young.

If clean-up time is a struggle for you, it is best to have a schedule and routines to follow. A daily clean-up is a must to keep diseases and germs at bay. What usually goes on during a daily clean-up are as follows:

[1] Cleaning of feeders and bird baths
Cleaning up of bird feeders, water dishes, and bird baths should be done on a daily basis. This is not just to provide fresh water and bird seeds, but also to keep away germs from developing over time. If you’ve set up a weekly schedule, it is best to still include these items during clean-up time.

[2] Set up a routine for you to follow and for the birds to get used to

Having a cleaning routine helps the birds from experiencing too much stress. It is also important that you’re the one who always do the clean up to also prevent stress and anxiety among the birds. As your pet birds become familiar and used to your presence, it will be easier to get in and out of their abode anytime.

[3] Use a corner of the aviary to isolate the birds

When things are still stressful for your pets, it is best to use a separator to isolate them from the area that’s being cleaned. Dedicate a corner for the birds whenever you need to clean up their living space and make sure it is cleaned first before they are enclosed in this portion. This usually helps in reducing restlessness and anxiety among birds, and it truly is beneficial especially when there are hatchlings.

[4] Use mild disinfectant when cleaning

You can dilute a strong disinfectant in buckets of water. If you like it chemical-free, you can use vinegar or baking soda instead. Wipe clean the bird boxes, perches, walls, and other dirty parts of the enclosure. On a daily basis, you can also do this especially on the most soiled or dirtiest portions of the aviary; otherwise, you can schedule on a weekly or bi-weekly schedule.

To help you clean up faster, it is best to put old news paper on the floor for the bird droppings and other mess. You can just collect the sheets everyday in the afternoons and replace with new sheets for the following day.

It is a huge responsibility to keep any kind of animal as a pet. If you love birds and lots of them, be prepared to do regular clean-up to help keep your pets healthy and happy.

What To Know About Cockatoos

Pets make the lives of most people a lot more fun which is why people always make it a point to have a pet at home. Aside from dogs and cats, people also like taking care of birds specifically Cockatoos. These are great birds and are very playful and colorful as well so to those who would like to know more about these birds, here are some things that they should do before getting their very own Cockatoo:

The first thing that the bird enthusiast needs to know about taking care of these birds is to prepare their budget. This is because raising these birds can be a bit expensive. Pet owners should also bear in mind that they should have a pair so the Cockatoo would not be that lonely.

People should also prepare for the noise because most Cockatoos are noisy. Some even talk like little kids so to those who want some quiet time with their loved ones, they may need to think about it first before they consider getting one.

You also need to make sure that you provide your birds a lot of attention because that is what they like. You should be able to spare some of your time to interact with your pets because it makes them feel good all the time.

Cockatoos also need to be maintained properly. Their cages should always be cleaned and there should be enough water to hydrate them. It is also important that the cages of the birds are in the busy area in the house so the birds would always have tons of audiences to watch them when they are doing some bird tricks.

Cockatoos are also a bit noisy and they scream a lot. There are tons of noisy breeds so to those who would like to have some quiet time, they may pick those species that are not that noisy. People should also bear in mind that when pets get too excited, they tend to scream or make a lot of noise.

These type of birds are also great and could easily be taught so pet owner might want to train their very own Cockatoos. People could earn money from training Cockatoos or putting up some bird shows.

Now that you know what Cockatoos can do, you might want to consider getting your own pet. These are great information that future bird owners would like to check out before getting one.

Tips You Need to Know for Spring Bird Feeding

What to Feed Them

Now, it’s important to remember the significance of the breeding season. Over winter you can throw out whatever food you like and the birds will merrily peck it up, but in the spring there are children to think of!

Usually, birds will frequent feeders less as long as there are plenty of invertebrates lounging around for feeding. They’ll be able to sustain themselves easily and return to the nest to feed their children. Now, if the weather turns and creates a food shortage you may find yourself seeing many more visits from mature birds. The risk is they’ll not only use the feeder for themselves, but take food back to the nest. Fat, bread hunks, and large dry foods like peanuts can easily choke an infant bird.

Hand out high protein foods, including grated cheese, black sunflower seeds, mealworms and raisins. Sliced fruit such as apples and pears also respond well.

Keep One Eye on the Weather

At least in the winter you know what you’re getting. It’s going to be cold, and birds will need feeding. In the spring weather varies a lot more. For the most part food will be abundant and you can leave out minimal amounts, but a change in the weather can quickly result in food shortages. For insect-eaters, a bout of extremely wet weather will cut down their food source substantially, and you might want to leave out a few snacks appropriate to the species. A lengthy drought will harden the ground, and remove access to earthworms, a sizable loss for birds attempting to feed their young.

It’s incredibly different for humans to detect a food shortage. Rather than adjusting your feeding practices dramatically just keep track of your local visitors’ frequency. If they’re coming with regularity it may indicate an immediate food shortage, so be sure you’re not leaving out feed inappropriate for their young.

Keep it Clean

Unlike the winter, you’re likely to see a much slower turnover of feed. Keep your unused seed in a metal container to keep it from spoiling, and consider investing in a covered feeder for the garden. The combination of rain and heat can quickly create mould and disease in your seed, and you don’t want to be responsible for any health problems.

There’ll be more wastage, so try to keep the amount of feed out at any one time to a minimum. Clear up the debris left on the feeder or grass, as well. Hardily shelled black-oil sunflower seeds will slowly kill your grass, though fruit and sunflower chips will spoil extremely quickly. Try and give the feeder a healthy scrub around once a week, perhaps more.

Tips to Train Your Pet Parrot

Having a pet is a very nice feeling especially for people who do not have enough time to relax and unwind. Pets make the lives of many people a lot more fun so to those who wish to get a pet, make sure to try getting a pet parrot. Parrots are easy to take care of and best of all, they talk. You can definitely have a great time whenever you would hear them speak.

These are just few of the things that people should do in case they wish to train their pet parrot. Parrots are definitely great pets and since they can talk, there would never be a dull moment if you have them at home.

To those who wish to get one, then check out the amazing training tips:

    • Always make sure to train your pet parrot every day. If you wish them to learn something, you have to make sure that you only spend 10 minutes to train them because birds have small brains. The best way for them to retain what you have taught them is if you do not overdo it. 10 minutes would be enough for them to retain what you have taught them.
    • You might also wish to practice training them with props. This is great for people who use their pets for shows. This would help your pet become familiar with different props that would make the show a lot more fun and interesting. Try to find the best props that your pet would be able to play with effortlessly.
    • Be sure to train you parrot in a quiet place this is to make sure that they would not be confused with the sound that they need to follow. You also have to make sure that you give them rewards so they would learn easily. Try to scratch their heads because this means that they have done something great. Parrots are smart animals so be sure to reward them if they did something great.
    • It is also important that you train your parrot same time everyday so it would be something that the parrots would look forward to. They would also imbed in their minds that at the exact time, they get to have fun and learn new things. This is definitely a rewarding experience for both the owner as well as the parrot.

 

    • Always praise your pet for the great things that he or she was able to accomplish on your training. They would surely want to be praised and rewarded with what they were able to do for the day so be sure to do this so your pets would always look forward to having a new learning session with you.

Should You Diaper Your Pet Duck?

Owning any pet can be all kinds of work to try and domesticate your pet. You want to try to get them to learn how to use the bathroom, eat from their food bowls as well as get them to do things in a proper manner so that they won’t ruin your home and just generally create messes all over the place to which your home will just be ruined.

People have now even started owning a domestic duck as pets because they love animals and even want to have ducks be included in the family. I know this may sound a little strange, but it’s true, people even own ducks that they keep in the house and train just like any other pet that they might own. Since this is the case people will have to be able to do certain things in order to get their ducks trained well so that they won’t ruin homes they live in.

Putting a diaper on your duck is something that you can do to allow your duck to be able to go all around the house without you having to worry about it making messes all over the place and keeping your home clean. The great thing about having a diaper on the duck is that you aren’t going to always have to worry about finding surprises left and right in your house and that will take a lot of worry off of your shoulders when or if you decide to get a duck for a pet in your home.

Some people are in the market for breeding ducks and a diaper is a great way to tell your ducks apart if you need to do that. A diaper needs to be the right measurements for your growing duck so that you won’t have any kind of restrictions that may be unforeseen as well.

There are plenty of reasons to get diapers for your ducks because you can never be too careful when it comes to your home or your ducks. The ducks are just like any other creature and they can leave a huge mess just like the best of them.

In order to properly use the diaper, you are going to need a diaper harness which will securely hold the diaper in place, allowing your beautiful pets to run around freely and safely while also keeping your areas of the home perfectly clean. You are going to get the best of both worlds when you order diapers along with the diaper harness for your domestic duck. You are going to feel like it was one of the best decisions you have ever made when it involves your new baby duck keeping him clean all of his life.

The Complete Gouldian Finch Birdwatching Profile

If you are an experienced Australian birdwatching enthusiast, then undoubtedly you have heard of the Gouldian Finch, even if you have not had the privilege of seeing one in the wild. This spectacular bird has gained a lot of media attention in recent years due to its declining numbers, due to reduced habitat. Many birdwatchers agree that this finch is the most spectacularly coloured bird in Australia. There are a number of organisations that have taken to preserving the habitats of this remarkable creature. Recent research has found that there are only about 2,500 Gouldian Finch’s living in the wild.

Description

The little bird gained it’s name from John Gould, the discoverer of the bird. Taken by the beauty of the purple chested bird, he named it the Lady Gouldian. With it’s characteristic purple plumage, yellow feathered chest and green back, this little bird is hard to be mistaken.

Diet

As a grass-finch, the Gouldian Finch main diet source is from the ripe or semi-ripe seeds of native grasses. Interestingly for a few months during the year the bird changes its diet to cope with the arduous task of raising its young. During these months the birds diet consists mainly of small insects, which provide it with the added nutrients needed during this stressful period.

Habitat Location

It really is a tragedy when one considers the vast habitat that the Gouldian Finch once lived in, contrasted with the small areas that it occupies now. Many birdwatchers initially thought that the numbers of the Gouldian Finch were plummeting in the wild due to individuals capturing the birds for pets. Research has since shown that reduced habitats, and irregular fire patterns are primarily to blame for the reduced habitat. Nowadays the finch can only be found in the wild in the Top End of the Northern Territory of Australia. Mike Jarvis, one of the most respected birdwatching guides in Australia, regularly takes tours through the Mary River district and South of Pine Creek in the dry season, with great success with regular spotting’s of this endangered bird. If you are able to explore this region, keep an eye out for the finch in open woodlands near water sources. There is anecdotal evidence that they are often sighted near native spear-grasses.

How To Help The Gouldian Finch

Many kindhearted volunteers regularly monitor local waterholes in the Gouldian Finch’s native habitat to keep an eye out for the sightings. The more information that organisations can gather from volunteer birdwatchers on the habitat of the Gouldian Finch, the more that they can help protect that environment. Additionally individuals can take active steps to ensure that the current habitat of the bird is protected, and report any activities that are harming the area.

There have been new spotting’s of the Gouldian Finch in the Dampier Peninsula in Western Australia. Research has shown that this is not a population of birds that has moved to the area, but a population that has previously been undiscovered. This breeding population shows the importance of amateur birdwatchers reporting any sightings of the Gouldian Finch, as this area is now a protected area. With ongoing care and public awareness, generations of Australian will be able to enjoy seeing this most remarkable bird in the grasslands of Australia.

A Clean Bird Room – 5 Ways To Keep Your Aviary Clean

A clean environment for your bird will keep you and your pet healthier. Sometimes it may feel like effective cleaning is easier talked about than done. But following the 5 suggestions below will help you drastically reduce the number of particles in your bird room.

Avoid Particle Traps—-There are so many places in the usual home and even bird room that can trap allergens. Wall-to-wall carpet, upholstered furnishings, piles of books and magazines, fabric draperies, horizontal blinds, and the list goes on and on.

Most of these surfaces are woven and can trap an unbelievable number of particles that can and are sent airborne with daily activities. The more of these you can eliminate, the better you will be able to clean thoroughly and really reduce the number of particles that are even available to get into your air.

As you add to and replace furnishings in your bird room and home, think bird-friendly replacements. Opt for easy-to-launder throw rugs that are easy to launder. Consider furniture that can be wiped down with a damp cloth rather than fabric covered pieces.

Choose linoleum, tile, wood, or other hard surface that can be mopped clean. And think about shades that can be rolled up and wiped clean and vertical blinds as options that will allow more particles to fall to the floor.

Say No—Saying no to just one more bird can mean that the bird(s) you have already adopted will have a better life. If you are a bird-lover you probably want to give every homeless bird a good life. But depending on the size of your space, continuing to add birds past a certain point makes it nearly impossible to keep conditions healthy.

“The more the merrier” rule does not apply in this situation. Offering fewer birds a good life trumps having a ton of birds that you are unable to care for properly.

Clean Often—How often you clean will be your call based on your situation. But you’ll be able to tell if your schedule is working pretty quickly. Some people are able to clean every couple of days, and others feel they need to clean every day and sometimes more than once a day.

Your frequency will depend on the number and type of birds you have. Those with powder-down birds such as African Greys, Cockatoos, or Cockatiels may find that more frequent cleaning is necessary to keep up with the incessant white powder that these parrots produce.

The goal is to literally keep the dander and dust down. Your room doesn’t need to be able to be able to pass the white glove test, but almost.

Clean Smarter—One of the best ways to really take particles out of circulation is to use water to clean. Adding water to the mix with a damp mop or cloth makes the particulates too heavy to escape into the air again and gives you more of a chance of permanently eliminating them.

A vacuum with a HEPA or high efficiency particle arresting filter is also an excellent way to make sure that what is sucked into the vacuum cleaner stays in the vacuum cleaner. Keep the broom and dust mop out of the mix and opt for the vacuum cleaner.

Filter The Air—Regardless of how smart or frequently you clean, particles will get into the air. Particles just come with the territory when you live with birds. The only way to reliably keep the air clean is to filter it continuously.

HEPA filtration is best because its only by-product is fresh air. There are no ionized particles or ozone levels to worry about.

HEPA filtration is used by hospitals and will surely work for you in your situation. This type of filter must have proven that it is able to eliminate 99.97% of airborne particulates that are.3 microns or greater.

Together, these 5 steps can take you closer to providing a wonderful life for you avian friends, and a healthier life for all who live with them.

Bird Lovers Should Add Native Plants for Their Feathered Friends

Birds add natural beauty to gardens, parks and other landscapes with their gorgeous colorations, happy chirps, and graceful flight. These feathered creatures also assist in plant pollination (i.e., hummingbirds) and in pest control by eating slugs, snails and wireworms (i.e., purple martins). It then comes as little surprise then that professional gardeners and landscapers plan outdoor spaces with the goal of attracting beneficial bird species.

The best way to attract birds into the garden is to concentrate on the cultivation of native plants including shrubs, vines and trees. Doing so is beneficial for several reasons:

1. Indigenous plants have evolved alongside the local wildlife and, thus, are most likely to provide the right attributes for birds to co-exist with. For example, hummingbirds drink the nectar from plants and, in the process, assist in the pollination of the species to form a mutually beneficial relationship.

2. Native plants create natural corridors where birds can fly back and forth in their natural habitats. In contrast, non-native plants can disrupt the flow, so to speak. Such aspect of plant cultivation is of particular importance to areas impacted by manmade development projects.

3. Indigenous plants will not crowd out other plant species, thus, ensuring diversity of plant life beneficial for the attraction of the local wildlife including birds. In contrast, non-native plants may provide abundant food for birds but are more likely to invade the entire area; examples include Japanese honeysuckle and buckthorn.

4. Of course, the definition of native plants will vary from one location to the next, which is also compounded by the fact that many plants are considered indigenous to several zones. The best way to determine whether a plant is indigenous to the area is to ask the experienced staff of your local plant nursery for more information.

5. When selecting native plants for your bird-friendly garden, consider the following factors:

6. Choose plants that provide food for birds in various ways such as from buds, flowers and nectar aside from the usual fruits.

7. Select species that provide food the whole year-round or for the most parts of the year so that the birds will keep coming even in winter. For example, serviceberries, mulberries and wild cherries provide fruits for the spring; magnolia, spicebush and flowering dogwood have ripening fruits in the fall; and nannyberry, crabapple and hawthorn provide winter sustenance.

The more diverse your choices in native plants, the more diverse the bird life in your garden!

7 Most Common Birds That You Can Find In Singapore

If you live or work in Singapore, you may often have the urge to know more about the city. In this article, we are going to talk about some of the most common birds you can find in this city. We will share some common facts about these birds.

1) Javan Mynah

This bird is called the white-vented mynah as well. For the first time, in 1920, this bird was brought from other countries to be kept as a pet bird.

As far as breeding and food are concerned, mynah is quite adaptable. It leaves its nests before other birds in order to eat road kills, fruits, leftover human food, and insects.

2) Asian Glossy Starling

Often, these birds get together in big flocks consisting of 30 birds. You can find sitting on TV antennas and feeding on different types of fruits in gardens. At night, you can find them in big communal flocks and roosts. Their voice sounds like a whistle.

3) Pink-Necked Green Pigeon

The male pigeon is more colorful than the female. Often, their nests are in trees. Rarely they are found on the ground. Typically, they get down only when they have to drink water.

The pair helps each other incubate the eggs and the nest. Typically, the male rests in the nest throughout the day, and the female comes back in the evening. Unlike other birds, doves and pigeons don’t have oil-producing glands. So, their feathers are not waterproof.

4) Yellow-Vented Bulbul

You can find this bird in almost every park and garden. In gardens, they can be seen flying around flowering shrubs. Usually, it’s cup-like nest is made of plastic strips, raffia pieces, tissue paper, and plant stuff.

They feed on caterpillars, beetles, grasshoppers, and ants. After having their meal, they like to bathe and preen.

5) Whimbrel

You can find these birds breeding in the arctic and sub-arctic parts of the world. Usually, they fly to other countries, such as New Zealand, Australia, and Asia during the colder months of the year.

In Singapore, you can find them in September and November. Their long bills to feed on marine animals and crustaceans.

Whimbrel was seen at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve after a long time in 2014.

6) Pacific Golden Plover

In Singapore, you can find this beautiful bird on the shores. They feed on insects, spiders, worms, marine, and crabs, to name a few. This bird can fly thousands of miles without getting tired. They fly in flocks of hundreds of birds.

In Singapore, they arrive in late August. In April, they fly back to their original sites.

7) Common Redshank

You can identify the common redshank from its red legs. But the juveniles don’t have red legs. Their legs are greenish-yellow. These nervous birds are often seen flying around the sandy shores.

In the breeding season, the common redshank feast on worms, insects, and spiders. Before or after the breeding season, they eat tadpoles, small fish, crustaceans and mollusks.