Rabu, 31 Oktober 2012

How to Feed Pelican Babies

How to Feed Pelican Babies

There are at least seven known species of pelican found worldwide, with the smallest of them, the brown pelican, being the most common in the United States. In the wild, baby pelicans reach into and feed directly on regurgitated food from the parents' pouches. As this is difficult for a human caregiver to emulate, tube feeding becomes a necessary method to nourish a baby pelican chick.

Instructions

    1

    Mix the formula as directed on the package or by a veterinarian.

    2

    Measure from the pelican's beak to the middle of the crop, imagining a line down the middle of the neck. Add 2 inches to be on the safe side. This is the approximate length of catheter needed to prevent causing discomfort or injury to the bird.

    3

    Hold a lighter or lit match to the cut end of the catheter to melt and smooth any rough edges. This is the end that will be inserted into the bird's throat.

    4

    Slip the untreated end of the tube over the end of the syringe. Draw the formula into the syringe.

    5

    Lubricate the other end of the tube with a personal lubricant, and position the tube to slide smoothly and straight down the bird's esophagus to the opening of the crop.

    6

    Administer the formula gently, without force, to avoid injuring the bird.

How to Find Purple Budgies

The Melopsittacus undulates or budgerigar, also known as a budgie, is a small light green and yellow parakeet with black markings originally from Australia. In captivity, owners selectively breed budgies using dominant and recessive feather color traits to produce a wide range of colors including blue, grey and purple/violet. As purple to violet-colored budgies come with different color shadings and markings, and birds, like people, have different personalities, you should check more than one source to find a purple budgie whose colors and temperament you will like.

Instructions

    1

    Contact small local budgie breeders to find a purple budgie that matches what you're looking for. Small local breeders usually have a better selection than pet stores, and can refer you to other breeders if necessary.

    2

    Check out small, locally owned pet stores. The owner of a small local pet store, like a local breeder, is more likely to have a better selection of budgies. Larger and national chain stores may have unhealthy budgies or budgies not descended from good stock.

    3

    Join a budgerigar society or group for owners or breeders in your local community or online and ask for referrals. Those who breed, collect and/or show budgerigars are more likely to have the inside information on the best places to find purple budgies.

    4

    Go to local animal shelters. Many birds, including parakeets, find their way to shelters for various reasons, including emergencies that permanently separate pets from owners, or an owner's limitations -- monetary or physical -- could force him to give his budgie away. Sometimes a budgie is found outdoors, and without the means of tracking down the owner, a person drops the budgie off at a shelter.

    5

    Place local newspaper ads, online classified ads and query in budgie-related online forums seeking current owners who are giving away or selling budgies or specifically purple budgies.

How to Get Rid of Moths in Bird Seed

How to Get Rid of Moths in Bird Seed

When you bring bags of bird seed into your home, you may be bringing in more than a treat for your feathered friends. Bird seed is a popular breeding ground for meal moths, which lay eggs in the bird seed because it is an ideal food source for their larvae. The eggs and larvae may not be noticeable when the bird seed is brought into your home--but watch out. Before long, you'll find small moths fluttering around the bird seed bag and in your kitchen cabinets, where they will infest dry food sources such as crackers, cereal and flour.

Instructions

    1

    Freeze bags of bird seed immediately upon bringing them into your home. The cold temperature will effectively kill any moths, larvae or eggs that are inside the bag. The bag should be kept in the freezer for 48 hours.

    2

    Keep bags of bird seed in the refrigerator or an ice chest, if room allows. This will prevent moths from becoming attracted to the bird seed and laying eggs in the bag--a likely scenario in homes that are frequented by these pests. In the winter, the bird seed can be stored outdoors or in an unheated garage to free up space in the refrigerator or freezer.

    3

    Go through all of your kitchen cabinets and food containers carefully if you notice small moths fluttering around your kitchen. Meal moths, also known as pantry moths, can be difficult to eliminate from your home once they've taken up residence, so a thorough inspection and cleaning is a necessary first step. Throw out any contaminated food and place uncontaminated grains, cereals and pastas in the freezer or refrigerator.

    4

    Clean household cabinets to eliminate crumbs, making sure to get into the crevices where eggs or larvae may be residing. Check the toaster, toaster oven and other small dark places where food crumbs can be found, for evidence of meal moths.

    5

    Place a moth pheromone trap near bird cages, in the pantry and other areas where meal moths are found in the home. These non-toxic traps attract the male meal moths, which will stick to the inner surface of the trap and die. These traps can purchased at home improvement stores or at online retailers.

How to Breed Diamond Doves

Diamond doves are one of the smallest of the Australian doves; approximately 8 inches long and weighing less than an ounce. Though appearing small and delicate, diamond doves are actually quite hardy and easy to care for and are prolific breeders in captivity. In fact, if you have both a male and female diamond dove in your aviary, it would be pretty difficult to keep them from breeding.

Instructions

    1

    House a male and female pair of diamond doves in an aviary. These birds breed best in an aviary setting. They are free breeders and require no special treatment to encourage them to breed. They will be able to breed at approximately 5 months of age.

    2

    Provide several perches in the aviary. These birds need to perch, so provide many places in the aviary for perching.

    3

    Feed diamond doves finch food or quail pellets. Diamond doves are floor feeders, so sprinkle seed on the ground in the aviary for them to free-feed.

    4

    Provide clean, fresh water at all times.

    5

    Provide a nesting site. You can purchase plastic berry boxes for them to nest in, but any cup or receptacle will do as a nesting box. Attach the berry box to the side of the aviary about 4 inches from the wall to leave room for the birds' tails. Place the nesting site high up in the aviary and, if possible, behind a limb or branch to provide privacy. Doves will also build their own nests if a nest box isn't provided.

    6

    Fill the nest box almost full with dry grass.

    7

    Watch for mating behavior. After finding the nesting site, the male will coo and call to the female. The male will fan his tail feathers and touch his beak to the ground to call the female to mate. When she heeds his calls, he will mount her several times, flap his wings and sometimes might force-feed her before mating takes place.

    8

    Check the nest for eggs. Two white, oval eggs will be laid soon after mating occurs; one usually two days after the first. The male dove will sit on the eggs during the day and the female at night. Eggs will hatch in 12 to 14 days. Both parents will feed the babies that will grow rapidly and be ready to leave the nest in two weeks. By the time one clutch leaves the nest, the hen will lay eggs again. A breeding pair of diamond doves can produce two babies a month with regularity.

How to Make Chicken Hutches

How to Make Chicken Hutches

Making a chicken hutch is ideal if you are not going to raise more than one or two chickens at a time. Hutches are not complicated structures, but some woodworking skill will help the project speed along. Before you begin this project, however, check city codes in your corner of the world to see if there are any restrictions or guidelines for raising chickens.

Instructions

    1

    Apply glue to two of the 1-by-2-by-30-inch lumber and secure them to one of the 30-inch edges of the 30-by-12-by--inch plywood with the 3d box nails. These are supports for the chicken hutch floor.

    2

    Place the four 2-by-2-by-36-inch lumber (the legs) on the worktable and make a mark 12 inches from one end of each. Secure the plywood to the legs with the 3d box nails.

    3

    Secure the 6-by-30-by--inch plywood to the top of the legs. Next, measure, cut and secure chicken wire to the space between the 6 and 12-inch plywood.

    4

    Secure the sides to the 36-by-24-by--inch plywood to with the 3d box nails. Next, build a rectangular frame with the 2-by-2-by-36-inch lumber and the 2-by-2-by-21-inch lumber placing the 21-inch pieces between the 36-inch pieces.

    5

    Secure the frame to the front of the chicken hutch with the 6d box nails. Build another frame with the 2-by-2-by-32-inch lumber and the 2-by-2-by-20-inch lumber placing the 20-inch pieces between the 32-inch pieces. Cover this frame (door) with chicken wire.

    6

    Install hinges on the door and then install the door to the frame. Install latches on either side of the door to keep it in place.

    7

    Secure the two 1-by-2-by-37-inch pieces of lumber to the bottom side of the 37-by-31-by--inch plywood with the 3d box nails. Next, secure the 1-by-2-by-30-inch lumber between the 37-inch pieces with the 3d box nails. This is the top to the chicken hutch.

How to Raise a Duckling

How to Raise a Duckling

Having a duck as a pet is far more interesting than one of the more traditional animals. But ducklings do require specialized care. For instance, feeding your new duckling the wrong things could disfigure or even kill him. And, failing to provide a safe environment also puts his life and health at risk. However, with the right instruction, most people can successfully raise a duckling as a pet.

Instructions

    1

    Keep your duckling inside for the first four to five weeks of its life. It can be kept in a cage or playpen, provided the mesh is strong enough not to get pecked. Provide an artificial heat source, such as a heat lamp, if you do not have the mother duck. Clean duck droppings from the enclosure daily.

    2

    Move your duckling outdoors after five weeks if the weather is warm. Provide it with a shelter from the elements, such as a lean-to or a small dog house.

    3

    Provide your duck with plenty of fresh water. They are messy drinkers, so clean the water dish daily. Always provide water at meal times, as ducklings need it to wash down their food and can choke without a water source.

    4

    Feed ducklings prepared feed that has 20 to 22 percent protein for the first five weeks. Game bird starter feed works well for young ducklings. Change the feed to one with 16 percent protein after that time. Game bird grower feed works well for older ducklings.

    5

    Provide your ducklings with fresh chopped vegetable greens, such as mixed greens or weeds out of your garden, after they have reached five weeks of age.

    6

    Prepare a water source for your ducklings to swim in after they are four weeks old. A small children's pool works well. Place terracotta planters upside down in the water source to provide a place for the ducklings to rest while swimming.

    7

    Handle your duckling regularly to get it used to human contact. This will make the adult duck a far more pleasant pet.

How to Tell the Difference in Male & Female Muscovy Ducks

How to Tell the Difference in Male & Female Muscovy Ducks

How to Know When An Egg is Hatching

How to Know When An Egg is Hatching

Hatching eggs is pretty easy.

Instructions

    1
    Incubating Eggs

    You will come to enjoy the spring of the year, especailly if you are hatching out eggs. I use an incubator for almost all my eggs.

    2

    Of course if your turner happrns to go out, you'll either need to spring an extra 49.00 to buy another one, or turn them by hand. If turning by hand, you will need to do so at least twice a day, perferably more if you have the time.

    3
    Egg 1

    Chicken eggs normally start hatching in 26 to 28 days. Some will hatch out early, while others tend to run a couple of days behind. as you can see in this photo there is a tiny hole on the side.

    4
    Egg  2

    Normally you will hear the chicks "peeping" before they even start hatching. Alyhough, it is not uncommon for them to hatch out very quietly. This one is well into the hatching stage.

    5
    Egg 3

    If the chick seems to be getting out of the shell on its own, then leave them to do it naturally. This process can take all day, since they stop to rest in between efforts to get out.

Selasa, 30 Oktober 2012

How to Hand-Feed a Bird With a Pipette

How to Hand-Feed a Bird With a Pipette

A pipette is a useful tool for hand feeding baby birds because it allows you to get the food down into the bird's mouth where it can swallow. If you have ever watched a momma bird feed her young, you will see that she sticks her beak all the way down the open beak of the baby bird. You need to do the same thing and a pipette allows you to do that. It also allows you to slowly push food out so that the baby bird can swallow small amounts of food at a time until it is full.

Instructions

    1

    Schedule regular feeding times based on the bird's age. One recommended schedule is to feed baby birds under 1 week old every 2 hours round the clock. If you need to, set a really loud alarm that goes off every 2 hours, even at night. Feed every 3 hours if your baby is between 1 and 3 weeks old with a 4-hour break in the middle of the night. Feed every 4 to 5 hours for baby birds between 3 and 5 weeks of age. For older babies, feed them as needed by observing how much food they eat on their own and the size of their crop.

    2

    Heat an electrolyte solution to between 105 and 108 degrees Fahrenheit in a pot over the stove. Use a thermometer while heating to ensure the correct temperature. Baby birds are very sensitive and food fed at the wrong temperature can kill.

    3

    Fill the pipette with the heated electrolyte solution. Keep a bowl of warm water at the same temperature as the solution nearby to keep the pipette warm while the baby is swallowing. The solution in the pipette will cool quickly as it contacts the cooler room temperature. If your pipette has a sharp tip, remove it or cut it with a pair of scissors so that you don't stab the bird during feedings. Place the filled pipette in the bowl of warm water.

    4

    Pick up the baby bird gently and hold it in your palm with its head between your index and middle finger. Gently stick the end of the pipette into the left side of the bird's beak. Push the pipette so one drop is released. Watch to see if the bird swallows it. If your bird refuses to eat after several tries, check the temperature of the solution to make sure it is warm enough. If it still refuses, put it back in its brooder or nest box and try again in 15 minutes. If it swallows the first drop, continue giving it drops until its crop is gently rounded.

    5

    Look for an empty crop. The electrolyte solution is fed as the first hand-fed meal to ensure that the bird's digestive tract is working. The crop should also empty after a time. Once you see that the crop is emptying itself, you can now begin feeding your bird commercial formula.

    6

    Mix commercial baby bird food formula according to the manufacturer's instructions. Keep it diluted for young birds under a week old and thicken it on a weekly basis as the bird grows and can have more food in its crop.

    7

    Heat the commercial formula to the proper temperature. Fill your pipette with the solution and place it in a bowl of warm water at the same temperature as the formula. Gently place the baby bird in your palm with its head between your index and middle finger. Gently insert the end of the pipette into the left side of the bird's beak and give it a drop or two. Wait to see if it swallows it. Let it breathe and give it another drop or two. Increase the number of drops as the bird gets older and can swallow more. Feed until the crop is gently rounded.

Peacocks for Pets

Peacocks for Pets

With their bright colors and tame personalities, peafowl (peacocks and peahens) have become popular as pets in rural areas. Their housing needs are minimal except in areas where it can become really cold, and they do not require any special foods to keep them nutritionally balanced, so keeping them does not have to be a complicated undertaking.

Varieties

    The most popular and commonly seen peacock is the Indian Blue, which has blue feathers on its head and body as well as blue and green throughout its tail. The White peacock is an albino variation of the Indian Blue, and is usually a solid white over its body and tail. The Black-shouldered (with blue, green and black coloring in their wings) as well as the Pied (with blotched white color on the body and sometimes the tail) are also variations of the Indian Blue. Another species of peacock is the Java Green, which has a greenish body and more green coloring in its tail. A hybrid of both the Blue and the Green is the Spalding, with greenish-blue body feathers.

Temperment

    Most peafowl are gentle and non-aggressive, and will become socialized if handled from a young age. Peacocks may act more domineering or standoffish then the peahens, but even the males tend to be docile unless provoked. They will call to each other, sometimes very loudly, or use their vocalizations to warn of danger or express fear over something.

Housing

    Housing does not have to be complicated for peacocks, who prefer to nest in sticks and leaves during the night and spend the days wandering around your property. Because of their territorial instincts, they will prefer to stick close to home and shouldn't wander off too far. To protect them from weather, have a small building with nesting materials available. If you are in a cold climate, you may want to include a heating unit. If you do not wish to have your peafowl loose about your property, or are worried about predators getting them, construct an enclosure with complete walls and a roof, as these birds can and will fly out.

Feeding

    Peafowl are omnivorous birds and can be given game bird food as well as chicken feed, dry dog food, fresh green vegetables, pasta or even bread. They will often hunt and eat insects that they find in the yard as well. Shell grit, crushed cuttlefish and water round out their daily dietary needs.

How to Raise Baby Finches

How to Raise Baby Finches

Raising baby finches also includes taking care of two adult finches since the chicks rely very much on their parents for food and warmth. It is important that you provide a comfortable nest, nutritious food, and play time for parents and their chicks, once the adults have begun to lay and incubate fertile eggs.

Instructions

Preparing the Nest

    1

    Purchase a cage large enough for the two parent birds and their offspring, about 2 feet long x 1 foot wide x 8 inches high. Purchase a finch nest, such as a small or large bamboo finch nest. The size you purchase depends on the type of finch you buy and how many chicks they tend to have. Wooden nests are also available. These are wooden boxes mounted on the inside or outside of the cage, with a hole for the birds to get in and out. Wooden nests are easy to clean, and you can count eggs easily this way.

    2

    Line the bottom of the nest with nesting material, such as scraps of burlap and Kleenex.

    3

    Equip the cage with toys and mirrors. The birds will appreciate them, and play will keep them happy and healthy.

Feeding

    4

    Buy bird seed that is especially made for finches. You can also ensure their ongoing health and well-being by supplementing their diet with a variety of foods. Millet, fresh fruits, sprouts, and eggs provide an array of nutrients for your feathered friends. Cook a hardboiled egg and chop it up with the shell still on. Chop up some fresh fruit and add it to the finch seed.

    5

    Feed your birds as you normally would when they've started incubating their fertile eggs. They will do all the work needed to keep the eggs warm.

    6

    Let the parents do the work. When the chicks are born, their parents should feed them within the first three days of life. Typically, the parents always feed the chicks. If parents do not feed their chicks, the chicks may die after a few days. There is a chance of saving the chicks by hand-feeding them. Find out more at www.ladygouldianfinch.com/features_handfeeding2.mgi.

    7

    Provide extra millet, fruit, bird seed, and eggs to the parents so they can adequately feed the chicks and themselves during the chicks' nestling stage (after a chick is a week old).

    8

    Continue feeding millet and soft foods over the next few weeks, the fledgling stage, when the chicks have come out of the nest but are still extremely dependent on their parents. In the next few weeks, the chicks will have their first molt, and in six months they will become sexually mature.

Will Cockatoos & Cockatiels Fight if Put Together?

Will Cockatoos & Cockatiels Fight if Put Together?

Cockatoos and cockatiels live in the rainforests of Australasia and Southeast Asia, although their climatic adaptability has led them to colonize other habitats including savannahs. As both types of bird can become bored, it is recommended to have two or more birds in the enclosure, or else be prepared to spend a lot of time keeping it occupied. Bored birds are likely to develop bad habits such as loud screeching and feather plucking.

Differences and Similarities

    Cockatoos and cockatiels are both members of the parrot family and share more similarities than differences. Both birds frequently have crests on top of their heads and both species have joint parenting duties where both the male and the female feed their young. Both birds also experience a complete change in plumage after their first molts. The major difference is, of course, the size, with the cockatoo being substantially larger than its cousin the cockatiel, and it is this difference in stature that leads some owners to fear for the safety of the smaller cockatiel upon introduction to a flock containing cockatoos.

Aggression

    Although aggression is not natural behavior for either cockatiels or cockatoos, such aggressive instincts can arise in individual birds. This aggression may be manifested against the bird's owner or other birds within the flock. Sam Foster of Parrot House has observed that aggression in cockatoos and cockatiels is most common in cases where a sexually developing male has been separated from his breeding pair, although she says that this is not always the case. Foster maintains that birds bought and sold through advertisements in newspapers -- rather than from more reputable and responsible sources -- are more likely to have been inadequately bred and reared, leading to unusual behavioral patterns.

Managing Aggression

    Emma McCaffrey of Cockatiel Cottage has identified a three-step method for dealing with this sort of behavior. McCaffrey recommends taking time to identify the cause of the aggressive behavior, stating that it is usually a sign that the bird is under stress or dissatisfied with something. Observe its behavior and watch for any warning signs that might be signifying an attack of aggression. These signifiers include biting, hissing, raising one leg or turning away. Once the cause of the stress has been identified, attempt to reinforce desirable behavior in the bird by rewarding it with praise and treats when it is well behaved, and ignoring it when it is not. Thirdly, McCaffrey recommends nurturing your pet's personality by talking to it in a gentle voice and acting calm around it. Cockatoos and cockatiels respond to our demeanor and energy levels, so it is wise to spend a lot of time instilling feelings of calm into the bird.

Quarantining

    Another problem that comes with keeping these two types of birds together is the problem of disease. While cockatoos and cockatiels do not naturally carry diseases harmful to each other, the introduction of any new bird into a flock from an outside location carries the potential to spread disease. Veterinarians recommend a period of 90 days in quarantine, during which the bird should be watched closely and examined for any exhibition of disease. As many avian diseases are airborne, it is vital to keep the new arrival out of the airspace of the flock, not simply out of contact.

Difference Between Wild & Domesticated Turkey Feathers

Difference Between Wild & Domesticated Turkey Feathers

Turkeys have long been one of the most popular birds in the U.S. The succulent meat has evolved into a staple of Americans' annual Thanksgiving dinner, but long before that, Native Americans used turkey feathers in many ceremonies and rituals. Whether the turkey is found in the wild or is of the domestic variety commonly sold as a food source, turkey feathers are much the same, except for color.

Wild Turkeys

    The wild turkey is one of two species of the game bird, the other being the ocellated turkey. Found all over North America, male wild turkeys typically boast iridescent feather of green, gold, copper or red. The wing feathers are a shiny bronze marked with white bars. The plumage of the female is more drab, mostly shades of brown and gray. The tail feathers of both genders are long and dark, spreading out in the bird's unmistakable fan shape.

Subspecies

    There are five subspecies of wild turkeys in the U.S., and each features subtly different colorations on the feathers. The most common is the Eastern wild turkey, which has tail feathers tipped in chestnut brown, while the tail and lower back feathers of Merriam's wild turkeys are tipped in white. Osceola turkeys, also called Florida turkeys, are darker overall than Eastern turkeys, and the wing feathers are especially dark, with smaller amounts of white. The feathers of Rio Grande turkeys have a coppery green gloss, and the tips of their tails are buff-colored. Gould's turkeys have a slightly more greenish-gold shade on their body feathers, and their tail feathers are longer than those of the other subspecies.

Domesticated Turkeys

    Domesticated turkeys are of the same species as the wild turkey, but they are not a subspecies. They simply are wild turkeys that have been tamed. This domestication process was first undertaken centuries ago by the Aztec Indians of Mexico. Today, domesticated turkeys are found all over the world. Those raised on farms as food usually have white feathers all over their bodies. The domesticated turkeys have been bred for this specific plumage color because, when plucked, the white pin feathers do not leave any dark markings under the skin. Brown or bronze feathers still are seen occasionally. In fact, Standard Bronze turkeys are the oldest domesticated breed in the U.S.

Other Domestic Breeds

    In the U.S., domesticated turkeys usually are a breed known as the Broad Breasted White. However, because the birds were taken to Europe not long after they were discovered, there are many other distinct breeds of domesticated turkey to be found there. Cross-breeding has led to new European breeds such as the Royal Palm and the Spanish Black, and new patterns of plumage. There are other breeds of domesticated turkeys in the U.S. as well, including the Beltsville Small White, thanks to advances made in the breeding of these birds.

Ocellated Turkeys

    The second species of turkey, the ocellated turkey, is not found in North America. Rather, this species resides only in a small area of the Yucatan Peninsula. The plumage of ocellated turkeys is very different from that of their North American cousins. Neither gender features the beards typically seen on male turkeys of North America, and the body feathers of both genders of ocellated turkeys are green and bronze. Tail feathers are gray-blue and carry a bronze-blue spot in the shape of an eye. Ocellated turkeys were named for this spot. Due to its similarity to the eye-shaped spot found on peacock tail feathers, some scientists believe ocellated turkeys are more closely related to those colorful birds than to other turkey species.

Senin, 29 Oktober 2012

How to Make Your Own Birdseed

How to Make Your Own Birdseed

Commercially purchased birdseed often contains basic seeds that are inexpensive and generally unappealing to birds. They will attract birds, but the variety of birds will be low, and if a better food source is found they may not come at all. Making your own birdseed, using a variety of different seeds, will attract many different birds, and will also provide them with the calories they need to survive.

Instructions

    1

    Clean out a large metal trashcan with a lid. Put a trashcan liner into the can. Ensure the liner is the proper size for the can, and extends all the way to the bottom.

    2

    Pour 15 pounds of black sunflower seeds into the can. This commonly used seed has high energy content and is desirable to most varieties of birds. Add 10 pounds of millet to the sunflower seeds, and stir the two together using the wooden handle of a broom.

    3

    Add 5 pounds of flax seed and 5 pounds of peanut hearts to the mixture, and stir well. Flax seed is a favorite of finches and sparrows, and peanut hearts are high-calorie energy boosters that help keep the birds energized as they migrate.

    4

    Mix 2 pounds of cracked corn and 3 pounds of safflower seeds into the birdseed as before. Cracked corn is especially favored by blue jays, quail, doves, blackbirds and magpies.

    5

    Combine 2 to 3 pounds of coarse builder's sand with the birdseed, and stir well. This sand, called grit, is eaten by birds as a digestive aid, and will help break up some of the harder seeds.

What to Feed a Fledgling Bird

During the late spring and summer months it is likely to encounter a baby bird that appears abandoned on the ground. A fledgling bird is actually taught to seek food on its own, while its parents observe from a distance. Do not assume the bird needs your help at first. If the bird remains on its own all day and doesn't appear to have help from parent birds then you may choose to feed the bird and care for it until you can get it to a wildlife rehabilitator.

Pet Foods

    Feed a fledgling bird the same as a dog or cat. Soak dry dog food or cat food in water to make it moist and easy to swallow. The contents of the pet food will be the best temporary diet for the bird, according to the Louisiana SCPA. The bird will open its beak in an attempt to beg for food when it is hungry. Don't forget to make a homemade nest for the bird to sit in, such as a small bowl lined with paper towels.

Proteins

    For many species a baby bird's diet requires a lot of protein in order to grow at a fast rate, according to The Aviary website.
    Meat should make up the majority of what you feed to a fledgling bird. Cut up small pieces of raw kidney or liver and give it to the bird using a pair of tweezers to drop into the mouth. Aside from meat, baby birds may also get protein from the whites of a hard-boiled egg cut into small strips. They will also eat the boiled yolk of the egg if it is mashed into a paste. Protein rich dog biscuits soaked in water will also work as a temporary food for fledglings.

No Milk

    Do not use milk to soften dry foods for birds, as they are not able to digest it properly, according to the Louisiana SPCA.
    While it may seen natural to feed babies milk, remember that these creatures are not breast fed mammals and their requirements differ from other animals. Avoid dairy products, because the bird may already be having a hard enough time surviving, without having to cope with digestive problems too.

Feeding

    A fledgling bird will need to eat every 15 to 30 minutes from dawn until dusk, according to the Louisiana SPCA.
    Carefully drop the foods into the mouth of the bird and continue to feed it until it stops opening its mouth and begging for more. Do not touch the bird unless absolutely necessary and keep it in a warm place where it will not be disturbed.

How to Bond With a Cockatoo

How to Bond With a Cockatoo

Cockatoos are popular pets among bird lovers, but they can be problematic companion animals for inexperienced pet owners. Although they are a member of the parrot family, the cockatoo cannot mimic human speech well. Cockatoos are also highly social animals who do not do well alone in cages for long periods of time. They have a strong curiosity drive and require a lot of attention from their owners. Developing a strong bond with your cockatoo is absolutely necessary to his happiness and yours.

Voice and Presence

    You must acclimate your cockatoo to your voice and presence before moving onto handling him, especially if he is a rescue. If he seems nervous or skittish in your presence, begin by spending five to ten minutes a day around him. Always enter the room positively and calmly, and do not make any sudden moves. Read a book aloud in a firm, calm voice near his cage. Though it may feel silly at first, remember that the cockatoo is a verbal animal who recognizes members of his own flock through voice. Acclimating to your voice is the first step the cockatoo needs to bond with you.

Feeding

    Cockatoos in the wild often share food with each other. Sharing your food with your cockatoo shows him that you do not mean him any harm. Once your bird appears to be comfortable in your presence, try offering him a bite of food from your plate (as long as it is free from salt or seasonings). If your cockatoo does not accept it, place the piece of food in his bowl and continue to eat your meal in front of him. Do not get discouraged if the bird does not accept your treat right away. Birds are very slow to adapt to new behaviors and surroundings. Persistence is key here.

Playtime

    As a member of the parrot family, cockatoos are very curious and love to play with toys. Buy or make a variety of toys for your cockatoo, and always supply new ones to prevent boredom. Make a note of which toys are your cockatoo's favorite, and place them near or on you. The bird will make a positive association between playtime and you. As your relationship develops, you can play directly with your cockatoo. Try shredding up newspaper or tissue paper together as a beginning bonding activity. Cockatoos also love to carry and toss around small balls.

Grooming

    Most birds in the wild groom each other. Mutual grooming keeps the flock clean and deepens the bond between members. Once your bird is very comfortable around you, try grooming him. Gently rub the back of his neck to imitate grooming by other birds in the wild. It is important to acclimate your cockatoo to this type of touching, because you will eventually have to remove some pinfeathers. Pinfeathers are new feathers that are covered in a keratin-type material. Your cockatoo will remove most of the coverings on his own, but it will sometimes be necessary for you to remove a few he missed to ensure proper feather growth.

Do Zebra Finches Like Being Held?

Do Zebra Finches Like Being Held?

Zebra finches are among the most fun little birds around. At just 4 inches long, a pair of finches make enjoyable and beloved caged pets. But the fact is, they prefer not to be handled. What they lack in hands-on affability, though, they more than make up in spirit and ease of care.

Beautiful Coloring

    The natural coloring of zebra finches makes them gorgeous additions to the home or aviary. Their base body color can be grey, white or fawn. The breast is white with a black bib, with zebra markings on both sides of the chest. The sides of the body have a brown strip with white spots, and tails are often black with white spots. Males have round, bright orange cheek patches and deep, orange-red beaks. Females' coloring is more subdued, with faint cheek patches and lighter, orange-yellow beaks. Selective breeding has resulted in white and pied zebra finches.

Fun to Watch

    Zebra finches are active all day, with a few short, quiet periods. They are inquisitive and love to play together, so you'll want to provide plenty of different toys. Having just one finch isn't recommended, as you'd have to play with him all day to keep him from being lonely. More than one pair would be too much for a novice to handle. Have an assortment of perches -- some natural branches which help trim their nails -- placed at different heights so they can hop between them. Their natural inclination to fly means a rectangular cage is best -- about 28 inches long and 20 inches high for one pair of zebra finches. If you keep them in an outdoor aviary, surround the area with 3/8-inch-square mesh and nonpoisonous vegetation to climb, such as honeysuckle, forsythia and fruit trees.

Happy Chirpers

    Finches have a sound all their own. They don't sing like canaries, and they won't repeat their owners' sounds as parrots often do. They happily chirp back and forth to one another, though, without the loud, screeching tones other birds can utter. In time, they'll also interact with their owners by chirping in response to their talking, especially at feeding time.

Prolific Breeders

    Zebra finches are easy to breed, all year long. Females will stay healthier if they don't breed until they're between 6 and 9 months old, though they're able to breed much earlier. To encourage breeding, supply nesting boxes -- such as small wicker baskets or wooden boxes that are 4 inches all around -- and plenty of soft materials. It's fascinating to watch the male as he builds most of the nest, gathering the materials and flitting back and forth. Females will lay four to six eggs at a time; both birds will sit on the eggs, which hatch within 12 to 14 days.

Handle With Care

    If you're intent on trying to handle your zebra finches, start when they're young. Pick one up by placing one hand around his back, with your middle and pointer fingers gently around his neck, and use the other hand for support underneath. He's likely to be frightened by the handling and may bite. Bring both birds out of the cage this way, into a small, secure room with doors and windows closed, and let them fly around for exercise. This way, they may associate handling with having fun outside the cage. Leave the cage door open with millet inside to entice them back into cage. This especially works well toward evening, as they will want to get back to their roost to sleep.

Projects With an Egg Incubator

Projects With an Egg Incubator

Projects with an egg incubator involve the whole family and are a fun learning experience for children, allowing them to witness the miracle of birth. Determine the scale of your project before buying an incubator and eggs. If you have a chicken coop and lots of room for the birds, you will want a larger incubator. If you have a rabbit cage and a small fenced-in area, a small dome or Styrofoam incubator will do just fine.

Incubators

    Bird egg incubators come in all sizes and shapes, from large wooden cabinet-sized ones capable of hatching hundreds of eggs of all types and sizes, down to small dome incubators for one to 12 eggs. There are automatic incubators that turn the eggs and control the temperature and humidity levels with fans and forced air heating. Most people hatching eggs at home as a hobby use smaller, more labor-intensive incubators requiring hand-turning the eggs, spraying with a water bottle and closely monitoring the temperature and moisture levels. These are usually made of metal or Styrofoam.

Bird Types

    Once you've decided how many birds you want to hatch and raise, you have to choose the type of bird for your project. Popular choices are quails, pheasants, chickens, ducks, guineas, pigeons and geese. Then you will have to figure out the particular breed you prefer. There are hundreds of varieties of these birds, from the ordinary to the ornamental. Look through any of the dozens of egg catalogs in print or online to help you decide. Online auctions are a good place to select your eggs.

Hatching

    For all types of incubators, the procedure of hatching the eggs is pretty much the same. Research the species of bird you're hatching for any variations. Keep the temperature at 100 degrees, don't let it fluctuate. Humidity should stay at 60 percent. Control the humidity with a pan of water. Keep a thermometer and humidity gauge in the incubator and check them often. If not automatically turned, give the eggs half a turn four to five times a day, like a setting hen would. Mark the eggs to remember which way to turn them. Don't let the eggs point up, this can cause birth defects. Most types of birds will hatch within three to four weeks. Throughout the gestation period, candle the eggs to see how the chicks are doing. Do this in a darkened room by holding an egg in front of a candle or small bright light silhouetting---in surprising detail---the developing baby bird inside.

Rewards

    Hatching your own birds is a rewarding experience. The baby birds will bond with you and follow you around as they grow, thinking you are their mother. The hatchlings like to be held and will fall asleep in your hands from the warmth. No matter what kind birds you hatch out and raise, it's a special experience to be a part of their birthing process.

Minggu, 28 Oktober 2012

Cormorant Species

Cormorant Species

Cormorants, or shags depending on the area of the world, belong to the family Phalacrocoracidae. More than 30 species of cormorant exist worldwide and live most commonly in tropical, temperate regions. They are marine birds found around coastlines as well as in inland wetland habitats. Some species of cormorant have been trained to assist fishermen.

Cormorants of the Americas

    The Americas are the native home for 11 of the world's cormorant species. The great cormorant is a native of the United States as well as being found in Africa, Asia and Europe. It is one of the largest species and grows to almost 3 feet in height with a 5-foot wingspan. The other North American species are the double crested, Brandt's, Pelargic and the red-faced cormorants. The other species in the Americas are native to South America. These species are the imperial and rock shags as well as the guanay, neotropic, red-legged and flightless cormorants.

New Zealand and Australian Cormorants

    Most of the world's cormorant species are found in New Zealand or Australia. Known more commonly in New Zealand as shags, the native cormorants include the Campbell island shag. It is a medium-size species that grows to 2 feet and is native to some of New Zealand's smaller islands. Other species in New Zealand include the New Zealand king, Stuart island, Auckland island, Pitt island, Chathams island, spotted and Bounty's island shags. The Australian species are the black-faced, little pied, little black and the large pied cormorants.

Asian and Middle Eastern Cormorants

    The Middle East is home to just one cormorant species, the socatra, which lives in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates. The Japanese cormorant, as the name suggests, is native to Japan and other parts of mainland Asia. The Indian cormorant lives in India and parts of southeast Asia as does the little cormorant, which is also found in areas of China.

African and European Cormorants

    Africa is home to four species of cormorant including the bank cormorant, which grows to almost 2 1/2 feet in height. It is one of the species that is considered endangered. Africa's other three native species are the Reed, cape and crowned cormorants. Europe is home to two species including the European shag, which grows to almost 3 feet in height. The other European species is the pygmy cormorant, which is one of the most common varieties.

Domesticated Cormorants

    The cormorant's ability to catch fish is utilized in a long-standing tradition in some Asian countries. In places such as China and Japan fishermen float out on bamboo rafts with several cormorants, which are on leashes. The birds then dive for fish, which they catch in their beaks, but because of a piece of string tied around their throats, they cannot swallow the fish. The fisherman pulls the bird up and extracts the fish. The practice has become more of a tourist attraction in recent times rather than a viable fishing enterprise.

How to Open a Stokes Tube Bird Feeder

How to Open a Stokes Tube Bird Feeder

Feeding birds outdoors can be done by simply placing elevated containers of bird seed or feed around your backyard. Different types and styles of bird feeders are available, with one option being a tube feeder. Tube feeders, such as those manufactured by Stokes, are deigned to house bird food in a hanging tube, which allows food to fill the holes where birds feed from. Filling the tubes requires opening the containers for refilling as need be.

Instructions

    1

    Monitor the tube feeder to ensure that the feeder remains full enough so that the highest hole on the feeder has seed or feed available. Make sure to refill the feeder before the feeder becomes empty, so as not to distract birds from returning to your feeder.

    2

    Wear a pair of gardening or work gloves and stand on a ladder or chair to reach the top of the feeder. Unhook the feeder from the hook or nail the tube feeder is hanging from. Place the tube feeder on a flat surface, such as table that has been covered in paper or newspaper.

    3

    Untwist the top of the feeder. The portion that opens for refilling purposes is the top of the tube feeder. Turn the top counterclockwise while holding the bottom portion in your other hand. Fill the feeder by pouring seed into the top until full. The newspaper underneath will catch spills, which can be put back in to the bird food bag or container.

    4

    Twist the top back on by turning in a clockwise direction to secure. Hang the feeder back up and leave the area so as not to scare away birds seeking food.

How to Tell the Difference Between a Male & Female Indian Runner Duck

The Indian Runner Duck is extremely distinctive. It runs instead of waddling; cannot fly; has a remarkable, upright posture; and it has a very long neck. In fact, their almost comical look meant that they were originally called "Penguin Ducks." The breed originated in Malaya and is thought to have been first brought to Great Britain in the early 19th century by a returning ship's captain. It's wise to know a little about Indian Runners if you're interested in keeping them, including how to differentiate between the sexes.

Instructions

    1

    Once Runner Ducks are six to eight weeks old, it becomes possible to distinguish the males from the females by listening to their voices. Females are the only ones who can make the distinctive, loud "quacking" sound for which ducks are famous. The males, or "drakes," can only make a much quieter, whispering sound.

    2

    Indian Runner Ducks gain their adult feathers, or "plumage," by the time they reach the age of four to five months. A drake's plumage will always contain at least one notably curly feather at the end of the tail, while the females will have no such curly feathers.

    3

    The drake is also, on average, also slightly heavier than the female. A fully-grown male can weigh up to 2.3 kg, compared to the female, which generally weighs no more than 2.1 kg.

    4

    Adult female Indian Runners lay an average of 200 eggs per year. The males do not lay. The breed's egg laying can be a problem, as Indian Runners have a tendency to lay eggs wherever they happen to be and leave them on the ground.

How Long for a Macaw to Talk?

How Long for a Macaw to Talk?

Seventeen different species of macaws are known, all of which are medium-to-large birds belonging to the parrot family. Not all macaws are created equal and some have better talking abilities than others. How long it takes for your parrot to start talking will depend on the individual bird, but some may never talk at all.

Best Talkers

    Some species of macaw have more of a propensity to talk than others. If talking ability is your main criterion, think carefully about which species you want. Blue and gold macaws are known to be good talkers, capable of developing fairly large vocabularies. Others, such as military and scarlet macaws, are less likely to develop good talking abilities. Although hyacinth macaws don't tend to have huge vocabularies, they're highly intelligent and often learn to use words in the correct context, rather than simply mimicking.

How Long?

    The time it will take for a macaw to learn to talk varies. Most of them won't start to talk until they're between 6 and 12 months of age, but it's never too early to start encouraging them. Young macaws take in your lessons, but need a while to start vocalizing. If you get your parrot as an older bird, she's less likely to learn to talk at all, especially if she spent her formative years in a large flock or with little human contact.

Talking Abilities

    Just like people, all macaws are individuals, and their talking ability is individual as well. Some are real chatterboxes and will talk your ear off for hours, whereas others will say only a few words now and then. A few might even shun talking completely and communicate in other ways. One thing you shouldn't expect from your macaw is a clear speaking voice. Unlike some parrots, such as African grays, they have distinctly parrot-like voices and their words will sound squawky.

Other Vocalizations

    If your macaw doesn't talk much, it doesn't mean she won't vocalize in other ways. Some birds prefer just to shriek or squawk, which is their natural form of communication. Others like to whistleespecially species such as Hahns or noble macawsor mimic household noises, such as bleeps from the microwave or noises from the television. Don't be too disappointed if your macaw chooses to make these kinds of sounds rather than talking; she has many other great attributes that make her a wonderful companion.

How to Keep a Turtle Dove

How to Keep a Turtle Dove

Doves belong to the same order and family as pigeons, and both types of birds are commonly made pets. Turtle doves are native to southern parts of Europe, western Asia and North Africa, and in order to keep a turtle dove you need to be aware of the proper methods of care to ensure their health and happiness over their lifetime. Doves can live from 10 to 12 years, and one turtle dove was recorded as living for 34 years, so it's very important to educate yourself in their care because you will be looking after them for quite some time.

Instructions

Instructions

    1

    Secure appropriate housing for the turtle dove. Choose a rectangular cage with bars that are close enough together so that the dove cannot fit its head between them. If the cage has a wire bottom, cover part of it with paper or grassy sod because turtle doves tend to spend a good deal of time on the ground. Also, make the cage partially enclosed because this gives the doves a sense of security.

    2

    Arrange appropriate food and water for the turtle dove. A commercial mix of seeds supplemented with vegetables such as lettuce or spinach, or fruits like berries, apples and pears will suffice.

    3

    Provide supplements such as grit and gravel to help digestion. Add vitamins to the water, and crushed oyster shell for calcium.

    4

    Allow the dove to bathe either in a shallow basin of water, a dust bath, or by misting it with a soft spray of lukewarm water.

    5

    Clean the water, food and bathing bowls daily. Wash all perches and platforms once a week.

    6

    Allow the dove to leave its cage every day for the opportunity to fly and exercise.

How to Feed a Japanese Coturnix Quail

How to Feed a Japanese Coturnix Quail

The Japanese coturnix quail is a popular dish, and quail eggs are also in demand. Quail farmers set up tiers of brooder cages for the youngest quail, and then as they grow older, they move to larger cage networks, living in a grid that can be six cages high, extending far out in both directions. Feeding coturnix quail can take quite a while on the larger farms.

Instructions

    1

    Feed your hatchlings quail starter until they are 6 weeks old. This feed has all of the nutritional elements that a young quail needs, and it is designed with the simplicity that their digestive systems require.

    2

    Purchase coturnix quail feed at your local feed supply store. When checking out the nutritional labels, make sure to select a brand that has at least a 19 percent concentration of protein game bird layer.

    3

    Mix in some wheatgrass into your bird's feed. Just adding an ounce of wheatgrass juice gives your feathered friend the same benefit as eating almost 4 lbs. of leafy, green vegetables would -- an entire smorgasbord of amino acids, vitamins and minerals.

    4

    Place the blended food in your quail's cage. For laying hens, you'll want to add ground oyster shell or limestone to provide calcium. Your adult quail will eat about 1/2 oz. of your blend each day. Put the food out once a day, and don't put a whole bunch in to feed the quail for a few days. Each day, check to see if new food is needed, and keep water available.

Sabtu, 27 Oktober 2012

How to Calculate the Cost of Adopting a Parrot

It is important that you calculate the cost of adopting a parrot if you are considering adding one to your family. Although there is often not any charge to adopt a parrot, there are many costs involved in properly caring for a parrot.

Instructions

    1

    Know that a parrot cage ranges from several hundred to several thousand dollars, depending on the size of the parrot you're adopting.

    2

    Plan on spending $50 to $500 for parrot T-stands and play gyms. Exercise is essential to a parrot's health, and it needs climbing equipment to use inside and outside of its cage.

    3

    Count on spending between $60 to $150 per month for the food, depending on the size and type of parrot you adopt. Parrots need a well-rounded diet that includes fresh fruit and vegetables, a good-quality seed mix and pellets.

    4

    Learn to make toys for your parrot or plan to spend another $50 to $200 per year. Parrots love to play with their toys and like to chew on them.

    5

    Check with a veterinarian that specializes in birds and ask the cost of yearly exams and immunizations. On average, well visits to a veterinarian range from $50 to $200 per year.

How to Feed a Young Pigeon That Can Not Fly

How to Feed a Young Pigeon That Can Not Fly

Somehow you have acquired a baby pigeon that really should still be in its mother's nest. You are a kind person and could not fathom abandoning a helpless baby animal, so now you are going to have to learn how to hand feed a bird. You know it is possible because your local pet store is always advertising hand-fed baby birds but you just don't know how to go about doing it yourself. Hand feeding a bird is a big commitment, so be sure you have the time before deciding to keep it.

Instructions

    1

    Buy a feeding syringe and baby bird formula from your local pet store. Note that a feeding syringe is not a needle. It looks more like an eyedropper.

    2

    Mix up the baby bird formula according to the instructions on the package with warm water. You can test the temperature of the water on your wrist before mixing. It should be just slightly warmer than your skin.

    3

    Wrap the baby pigeon in a towel and hold it firmly. The baby pigeon is not going to understand what you are doing at first and it is going to be scared.

    4

    Pinch the sides of the pigeon's beak gently to open it. Insert the tip of the feeding syringe and squeeze out a little bit at a time. The pigeon might eat, or it might refuse.

    5

    Take the pigeon to a bird rescue if it refuses so that a professional can crop feed it.

    6

    Feed your pigeon at least five times per day if the pigeon accepts your food.

How to Breed Indian Ringnecks

With proper handling and socialization, the Indian ringneck parakeet (Psittacula krameri manillensis) can become a tame and loving bird. The bird usually reaches sexual maturity in about 1 1/2 years, but does not begin to breed until it is 2 or 3 years old. The breeding pair requires privacy from other ringnecks because they often exhibit an aggressive nature when breeding. The female ringneck will lay two to five eggs. The female will sit on the eggs for 23 days before they begin to hatch. The hatchlings will reside with their parents until they are approximately 7 weeks old.

Instructions

    1

    Place the breeding pair of ringnecks into a breeding aviary. Suspend a 1-foot by 1-foot by 24-inch nesting box in the aviary.

    2

    Provide a high-quality parrot seed mix with fresh vegetables and sunflower seeds daily. The breeding pair will benefit from the extra nutrition. Provide the birds with clean water.

    3

    House the male and female together for at least a year prior to breeding the ringnecks. A female will be less likely to injure a male that she is housed with regularly.

    4

    Remove the hatchlings at approximately 7 weeks old. House the hatchlings separate from the parents.

How to Pick Out a Cockatiel

How to Pick Out a Cockatiel

If you're looking to buy a cockatiel as a pet, there are some things you should know beforehand. Read this article for help in picking the perfect bird.

Instructions

    1

    Get some up-to-date books, or do other research to learn about the various cockatiel mutations (colors and breeds), and what goes into their care and feeding. Cockatiels require a lot of love and attention, make sure they're the right bird for you before you buy.

    2

    Make sure there is an avian vet in your area before buying a bird. Birds are delicate and can require special care that a standard vet may not be able to offer.

    3

    If possible, get a young bird that has been hand fed. It will make life easier when it comes to training and bonding. If you adopt or buy an older or pre-owned bird, just know that they will take a bit more time and attention than a younger bird, especially if they have not already been hand trained.

    4

    Only buy from a reputable pet store or breeder. Look at the conditions of the area the birds are kept. It should be clean, and the birds well cared for. The birds should not be in terribly close quarters, and should have clean food and water. Ask friends and family for recommendations on a good seller.

    5

    Keep in mind that male birds are more active and require more work than females. Females are good if you want a docile pet that will be very loving and submissive. Males are best if you want a bird that will like to play and may learn to sing and speak. Both make great pets, but males usually take more time and attention.

    6

    Make sure the bird is healthy. Baby birds will look rather scraggly, but when old enough to sell, they should not have any bald spots, no discharges from the nostrils or eyes, and their feet should be pink and not crusty. The exception to the bald spot rule is Lutinos. They will have a small bald spot on their head, behind the crest. However, the spot will be small on a well-bred bird. A large bald area indicates too much inbreeding.

    7

    Go to multiple stores/breeders when possible, and look at the birds in each place. Pick a bird that has the personality you like. If the birds are in cages with enough space, you should be able to watch each bird to see who's active, who's quiet, etc., and pick a bird that suits you.

How to Tell if a Lovebird Is a Boy or a Girl by Its Beak

How to Tell if a Lovebird Is a Boy or a Girl by Its Beak

You need to look at more than a lovebird's beak to tell if it is a boy or a girl. It is possible to tell a lovebird's sex from its beak, but you cannot be sure. Male and female lovebirds are monomorphic, meaning they look the same. Sexing is accurately performed in budgerigars by observing the color of the cere (nostril area), but this is not the case for lovebirds. Sexing lovebirds is not an exact science unless DNA testing or an operation is performed. There are a number of often imprecise methods that breeders use to determine the sex of a lovebird and examining the beak is only one.

Instructions

    1

    Practice comparing male and female lovebirds in the pet store. Ask the owner to point out male and female lovebirds to you, so you can compare their differences. The differences between the sexes are so small that by examining only one bird, you have no measure for comparison. For example, the male is sometimes marginally bigger than the female; therefore you need to compare both sexes. Sex lovebirds more easily the more experience you gain.

    2

    Observe the beak. The beak of the male is slightly longer with a longer hook. The female's beak is a little broader. The female's head and shoulders are slightly broader. Having a correctly sexed bird for comparison is preferable.

    3

    Hold the lovebird belly up in your palm. Gently pin it down with the fingers of the same hand. With your other hand, put your finger between its legs. Feel two bony points just above the tail. If the points are close together the bird is male and if they are further apart it is female. This method is not exact and requires practice and comparison with other birds.

    4

    Observe the bird's behavior. A female bird acts in an unusually aggressive manner if she is experiencing the urge to nest. Watch for nesting behaviors. If these behaviors are present then you have a female. Some female birds never exhibit these behaviors. A male lovebird is usually gentle and laidback. However, each bird is different and you may have a male with a consistently aggressive nature.

    5

    Find your lovebird laying eggs and be sure that she is female. However, some females never lay any eggs.

    6

    Take your lovebird to an expert for a professional opinion on its sex. Choose a lovebird breeder or pet store owner that specializes in birds. Still, even professionals can be wrong difficulty of sexing lovebirds.

    7

    Take your lovebird for a DNA test. The veterinarian will cut the bird's toenail far back enough to draw blood, which will be sent off to a laboratory for DNA testing.

    8

    Determine the sex of your lovebird by surgical procedure. If DNA testing is not available, an experienced veterinarian will perform a surgical procedure, whereby a small incision is made in the left side of its body under anesthetic. The procedure allows the vet to see the ovaries of a female bird. This method causes stress to the bird.

What Kind of Talking Birds Make Good Pets?

What Kind of Talking Birds Make Good Pets?

Birds are entertaining, intelligent pets who require far less maintenance than other domesticated animals. Their basic care is relatively inexpensive. Talking birds that are renowned for their affectionate and lively natures, and some breeds can live as long as their owners.

Types

    The most popular and commonly available pet birds that can learn to speak are parakeets, African grey parrots, cockatiels and cockatoos. Parakeets are roughly 7 to 10 inches long and are available in an array of attractive colors including green, blue, yellow and white. Cockatiels are generally grey, yellow and white with occasional variations such as albino, pied, lutino, and pearl. African grey parrots are silver and light grey. Females are somewhat smaller than males with an average length of 13 inches. Cockatoos are predominantly white with bright yellow crests. With more than 40 subspecies, they can range anywhere between 12 and 20 inches in length.

Considerations

    Creating a safe and ideal environment for your new bird is important as there are many common objects that can pose a serious threat to your pet. "Bird proof" the areas of the home that the bird can possibly reach during periods of "free flight time." Household cleaners should be appropriately stored so they are completely inaccessible to your bird. Child safety locks often come in handy to ensure pet safety as birds are far more intelligent that most humans expect. There should never be any open water in sinks or bowls that birds may fall into and drown, and many houseplants are toxic to birds and should be removed from the home. Bird owners should never use Teflon cookware, as dangerous chemicals are released into the air that will eventually result in illness and fatality for the bird. Any smoking should be done outside of the home as birds have extremely sensitive respiratory systems. When painting or using any other harsh chemicals birds should be removed from the house for this same reason. Birds should always be kept away from drafts and many will require surroundings set at a certain temperature with a certain amount of sunlight to maintain peak health and assist with the molting process.

Interaction & Training

    All birds will benefit from daily interaction and periods of flight outside of the cage. Hand raising baby birds will enable owners to develop a strong bond but will require many time demands and a lot of effort. Food must be provided every two hours at an exact temperature until babies are weaned or the chicks will not survive. They will also need to learn to fly. Hand training is a comparable substitute for older birds and can be equally as rewarding without consuming nearly as much of your time.

Diet and Nutrition

    All of these birds require a balanced diet. Seeds and pellets are the dietary staples, but also offer vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables as well as pastas, grains, nuts, beans and cooked meats. Spray millet is a treat that most breeds enjoy, while a cuttle bone is recommended for calcium enrichment. A constant supply of fresh water is vital for bird health, and should be monitored closely as birds will bathe in water dishes regularly.

Lifespan

    Parakeets have the shortest life expectancy at approximately six years. Cockatiels can live between 15 and 20 years. The Cockatoo has an average lifespan of 60 years. African grey parrots can live even longer than Cockatoos, with a final age ranging between 50 and 65 years when they are attentively cared for.

Birds That Eat Flies & Mosquitoes

Birds That Eat Flies & Mosquitoes

Birds that can catch insects in midair are considered the best type of bird to feed on mosquitoes and flies. Some birds only feed on insects. while other birds supplement their diets with berries, seeds and other plant materials. Having the right type of bird near your home can help reduce mosquito and fly populations, making outdoor areas more enjoyable.

Tree Swallows

    Tree swallows are a bird that feeds primarily on flying insects, including horseflies, mosquitoes, beetles, moths and grasshoppers. Tree swallows will feed on berries during the winter when these insects are not available for food. This species of bird can be found all over North America, ranging from Alaska south to California and Nebraska and east to Maryland. They do prefer wet living areas like flooded meadows, marshes, lake shores, streams and open areas near woods.

Eastern Kingbirds

    Eastern kingbirds are considered a fly-catching bird, which means they catch flying insects to feed on. This species will eat mostly insects during the spring and summer when insects are prevalent. There are over 200 different types of insects that eastern kingbirds will eat, including mosquitoes and different types of flies. They live in most of the continental United States with the exception of California and Arizona, but they are rarer on the West Coast and southeastern United States.

Chickadees

    Chickadees have a diet that consists of seeds, berries and insects. Wasps, mosquitoes, flies, other insects and caterpillars are part of a chickadee's diet throughout the year. During summer months the chickadees diet will consist of between 80 to 90 percent insects. During the winter months, plant matter and seeds will make up nearly 50 percent of their diet. Chickadees are common throughout the United States.

Barn Swallows

    Barn swallows are an insectivore, meaning they only feed on insects. Insects that barn swallows feed on include mosquitoes, different types of flies, grasshoppers, moths, beetles and other types of flying insects. Barn swallows will catch flying prey by chasing after it and zigzagging through the air while in pursuit. Barn swallows are common in North America, and are usually found on farmland, near or in suburbs, marshes and lake shores.

What Do Rainbow Parakeets Eat?

What Do Rainbow Parakeets Eat?

The Rainbow lorikeet is a flower and nectar eating bird native to Australia. The vibrant plumage pattern showcases distinct sections of whole colors beginning at the head with blue and moving down the body including vibrant colors such as red, green and some black. Rainbow lorikeets can live to be twenty years of age and feed on a variety of foods depending on its environment.

Flowers and Nectar

    Rainbow lorikeets that live in the wild feed on flowers, pollen and nectar in their native environment. Urban areas of Australia attract wild rainbow lorikeets with bright red blooming plants such as eucalyptus and kangaroo paws. While these plants may not be available at a local nursery, there are other blooming plants that are safe to feed domestic rainbow lorikeets. However, it is best to consult your avian veterinarian to obtain a list of blooming plants that are safe for domestic lorikeets to enjoy.

Fruit, Juice and Veggies

    Fruits such as diced and de-seeded apples, kiwi, cherries and bananas are sweet and tasty foods for rainobw lorikeets to nibble on. Additional fruits and juices such as peeled oranges and pineapples and grapes are also good sources of vitamin C. Sources of vitamin A and Iron are cooked sweet potatoes and fresh carrots and kale. Organic fruits and veggies are free from pesticides that are harmful to birds; natural juices are preferable to syrup and juice flavorings because of the added sugar. The more often rainbow lorikeets have the option of fresh foods over commercial diets the better.

Commercial Foods

    Buy breed specific foods because of dietary needs. Most hook bills eat a diet of seed and nuts, however commercially processed foods for lorikeets must include the nutrition required by the breeds natural diet of flowers and nectar. Most commercial lorikeet diets are mini sized to small pellets to make it easy for the lory crumble and digest. You can use a favorite natural juice to soften food, but you need to replace wet foods every few hours to prevent spoilage. Lorikeet foods should also mimic the sweet pollen and nectar taste of their natural foods, so many lory diets are fruity and sweet upon taste and smell. However, lorikeets should obtain sugar from natural sources instead of processed or refined sources.

Considerations

    Real sugar is preferable in small servings and from natural sources such as cane sugar, sugar in the raw and fresh squeezed or purred fruits and veggies. Rainbow lorikeets thrive on fresh foods and non-toxic veggies and plants supplemented with a good quality commercial daily pellet diet. Most commercial diets contain all the nutrients required for companion lorikeets in captivity, so additives and synthetic vitamins are not necessary and can be harmful unless prescribed by a veterinarian. Foods that are fatal to birds are avocados, chocolate, alcohol and caffeine. Energy drinks contain chemicals and extracts that are fatal to birds as well.

How Do Penguins Survive in Their Habitats?

How Do Penguins Survive in Their Habitats?

There are many locations in the world where penguins can be found. They commonly inhabit countries such as South America, Africa, Australia and New Zealand. In order to survive in their habitat, penguins must stay close to water so that they are able to feed on the sea creatures that fulfill their dietary needs.

Water

    According to Penguin-World.Com, penguins spend most of their time, approximately three-quarters, in the water. They are able to easily adapt to the water as they are covered in feathers that enable them to move quickly while keeping the water from reaching their bodies.

Food

    The reason penguins are found in coastal regions such as South America and New Zealand is because they must live in an environment where they can hunt for food. In order to survive, their diets must consist of fish, krill, squid and crustaceans. By living close to cold water currents, a vast majority of these foods are pulled toward them.

Homes

    By using what they can find on land, penguins build nests and burrows. These burrows are extremely important; this is where they lay their eggs and care for their young until they are old enough to fend for themselves.

Dangers

    When their natural habitat is threatened, the upset can cause penguins to stop reproducing. This can then cause a particular species of penguin to drop rapidly in numbers. Global warming is also thought to be a danger to this species, especially those that live in the Antarctic. Deborah Zabarenko, an Environmental Correspondent, writes in her article that only "10 percent of young penguins survive the first independent trip" back to their colonies from their winter habitat. Zabarenko explains that the dwindling krill -- which is an essential part of these cold climate penguins' diets -- is the reason behind the penguins' decreased chance of survival.

Humans

    Humans are becoming an increasing threat to the penguins' natural habitat. If the water in which the penguins hunt for their food becomes polluted, it endangers their survival. Furthermore, humans are continuing to take over land, making it more difficult for penguins to live in their natural habitat. If something isn't done to protect the penguins' habitats, it's possible they will become extinct within the next 50 years.

Baby Birds Found in the Wild

Baby Birds Found in the Wild

Finding a baby bird alone on the ground is not unusual in spring. While they may appear lost and helpless, most of the times the parents are nearby and still caring for them. Before attempting to rescue any baby bird, a health inspection should be done. Injured baby birds should be taken to a wildlife rehabilitator or veterinarian. When finding healthy baby birds, the approach to be taken is different depending on the age of the bird.

Finding Hatchlings

    Hatchlings are young birds, less than five days old. They are naked or with minimal feather development. Because of their young age, they need feeding every 10 to 15 minutes and they loose body heat quickly. They need to be taken to a wildlife rehabilitator as soon as possible because they require specialized care.

Finding Nestlings

    These are young birds that are not fully feathered -- if their tails are feathered, these are less than a half inch long -- and they need to be put back in their nest. Sometimes nestlings are found on the ground near remains of their nest so a substitute nest has to be prepared for them. An old margarine tub lined with dry grass and the remnants of their nests will do the trick. Placing the bird on this nest and then hanging the nest from its original tree or a nearby tree will keep the baby bird safe. Always observe from a distance if the parents are away from the nest. If after two hours you see no sign of the parents, call a wildlife rehabilitator.

Finding Fledglings

    Fledglings are fully feathered mobile birds. Their tail feathers are 3/4 inch or longer. Normally found near or on the ground, they hop around trying to take off in short awkward flights. They are not good candidates for re-nesting because they are too old, but they still need to be reunited with their parents as they rely on them for food. When no predators such as cats or dogs are nearby, the best thing to do is leave them where they are and make sure their parents are close-by. With predators around, place the bird on bushes or on a tree limb nearby. In both cases, if you see no signs of the parents after two hours, call a wildlife rehabilitator.

Finding an Injured Baby Bird

    When finding an injured baby, extreme care needs to be taken when handling it. Do not attempt to feed or give water to the bird as this may cause more harm. Only provide water if instructed to do so by a wildlife rehabilitator. Place the baby in a small shoe box with a soft towel in it. The box should be placed on a warm, dark and quiet spot away from pets and humans. A wildlife rehabilitator should be contacted. The state wildlife agency or a wildlife veterinarian should be contacted when unable to reach the wildlife rehabilitator.

How Can You Feed a Newborn Baby Bird?

How Can You Feed a Newborn Baby Bird?

In general, a mother bird will feed her baby bird successfully and there should be no reason for you to intervene. However, if the baby bird is abandoned or you are breeding birds, you may have to hand feed the baby birds yourself. Since hand feeding can be time consuming and tricky, it is important to know the right way to successfully feed a baby bird to ensure safe and proper nutrition.

Instructions

    1

    Prepare an appropriate baby bird formula. The best option is to purchase a formula from your local pet store or veterinarian's office. Baby parrot formula is usually sufficient; follow the instructions that accompanies the formula. However, you can make your own by mashing up the hard boiled yolk of an egg and mixing in 1/3 cup of canned beef dog food. But, this homemade formula can only be given to a bird that does not have a crop. A crop is the sack located near the bird's throat that the bird can store excessive food in until a later time. Examples of a bird with a crop include pigeons, owls and seagulls.

    2

    Use an oral syringe to apply liquid formula to the bird's mouth. If you are using the homemade formula, dip the tip of a child's water color paint brush into the food to gather a bit of food. With the bird's mouth open, place the food at the very back of the bird's throat, near its esophagus.

    3

    Repeat feedings every 14 to 20 minutes during the daytime hours. For the most part, feedings can be skipped at night, depending on the type of bird and its age.

Jumat, 26 Oktober 2012

How to Keep Baby Wren Birds Alive

How to Keep Baby Wren Birds Alive

Wrens are one of the most common species of bird across the western hemisphere. They are insect eating birds that can and will build their nests pretty much anywhere, in trees, shrubs, tin cans, old boots, or any place in your yard that they deem worthy.

Instructions

    1

    Put the baby bird back in the nest if it is uninjured. If the nest cannot be found, which is typical because wrens tend to hide their nests, put some newspaper in the bottom of a berry basket, and put the wren in the berry basket and hide it in dense shrubbery. If the bird is injured, take it to your local veterinarian or wildlife conservation organization. If there is no interaction with the parents for three hours after the bird is placed back in the nest, assume the bird is an orphan and take the bird to the vet, wildlife conservation, or inside and care for the bird as follows in step 2 through 3.

    2

    Feed the bird every 15 to 20 minutes during daylight hours. Soak the puppy kibble in water until it is soft and pliable. Drain the water and mix one part kibble into 2 parts baby cereal. It must be a liquid consistency. Fill the dropper or syringe and squeeze the food into the bird's mouth. Be careful not to get the food underneath the tongue as that is the baby birds airways.

    3

    Line the shoe box with newspaper. Place the baby bird inside and poke holes in the top of the shoe box. Place the lid on the shoebox and aim the lamp toward the box. Put in the light bulb and turn it on.

How to Feed Cockatoos

How to Feed Cockatoos

Many new cockatoo owners are unsure of the best diet to feed their new pets. Cockatoos, like all pet birds, enjoy having variety in the foods they eat as much as human beings do. To include the widest range of vitamins and minerals in your cockatoos diet, try adding fresh fruits and veggies along with nuts, seeds, proteins and grains. Some owners may choose to offer treats like spray millet along with supplements like cuttle bones for calcium enrichment. A constant supply of fresh water is also an absolute must for any cockatoo.

Instructions

    1

    Pour fresh distilled water into the dish every day and change out the food so it is fresh on a daily basis. Offer fresh fruits and vegetables on a daily basis in separate dishes.

    2

    Fill two food dishes with seed and pellets according to the instructions provided on the back of the packaging for your bird's specific breed and size.

    3

    Offer nuts in the shell and spray millet for treats every other day.

    4

    Introduce your cockatoo to veggies. Purchase beets, dandelion leaves, peppers, sprouts, carrots, cucumber, kale, cabbage and spinach. Cut and wash, and offer different veggies every day. Wash and cook asparagus, chic peas, kidneys, lentils, broccoli, sweet potatoes, corn,parsnips and peas.

    5

    Feed different fruits each week. For the first week purchase fresh or dried nectarines, oranges, peaches, pears, pineapples, plums and strawberries. Wash and cut the fruit into bite-size pieces according to the size of your cockatoo. Wash and cut up fresh and dried apples, apricots, bananas, grapes, kiwi, grapefruit, melons and mangoes the following week.

    6

    Cook brown rice, barley, oats, vegetable pasta and eggs. Cut the foods up into bite-size pieces for your cockatoo. Offer a different food each day of the week. Soak chickpeas and beans overnight in lukewarm water. Add the sprouts to the vegetable dish in the morning.

    7

    Wash all food and water dishes every evening with liquid antibacterial soap and hot water.

    8

    Cook different meats and cut them into small pieces; offer them in a separate dish twice a week. Offer new foods continually and keep trying to offer them even if your cockatoo appears disinterested. Eventually the bird may grow to like the food.

How to Hand-Feed Sun Conure Birds

How to Hand-Feed Sun Conure Birds

With green, orange and yellow feathers, the sun conure is a parrot originating from South America. Sun conures are brightly colored, unique avians but maintain the same feeding habits as other birds. When you first bring a baby sun conure home, you still need to hand-feed your bird for a period of time. With a couple tools and bird formula, you will learn about how your bird feeds and wean it until your feathery pet is ready to eat solid food.

Instructions

    1

    Place 1 tablespoon of formula into a dish. Heat 35 cc of water in the microwave to 110 degrees. Mix the formula and water together in the dish until the consistency of gravy. Check the temperature of the formula with your finger. If burning hot, wait for formula to cool. The formula mixture needs to be warm, around 100 degrees, after letting it cool.

    2

    Place your baby sun conure on a towel in front of you. Fill the eyedropper with formula.

    3

    Hold the head of the sun conure gently between your thumb on one side of the head and the index finger on the other. Hold the eyedropper in your other hand. If your bird does not have its beak open, use your thumb to coax apart.

    4

    Insert the eyedropper slightly into the beak and down, angling for the back of the throat on your right side facing the sun conure. The placement is important as there are small holes in the head of your bird on the left side. Squeeze a little formula above the bird's tongue. Slowly continue squeezing, allowing the baby bird to rest while eating.

    5

    Feed baby sun conures three times a day during the first 30 days, two times a day from 35 to 40 days and once a day 50 to 60 days. The amount of food depends on the weight of your sun conure. Your bird should be fed 10 percent of its body weight. Once you start feeding your sun conure twice per day, your bird can also eat solid food, such as weaning puffs or pellets that can be placed in a visible food dish.

The Birds of Tiritiri Matangi

The Birds of Tiritiri Matangi

For over 120 years, from 1850 to the 1970s, Europeans cleared the natural habitats of the small New Zealand island of Tiritiri Matanga for extensive farming. This clearing drove numerous animal species from the island. Since the 1970s, the Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park Board has been reforming the island into a nature reserve and has been helping to bring back wildlife, including 70 species of birds.

Endemic Birds

    Endemic birds are species only found in a certain area. Tiritiri Matanga is home to 18 species found only on the island of New Zealand's mainland. The little spotted kiwi, for example, is likely extinct on the mainland, and only 50 or 60 live in the reserve. The kiwi, along with 10 other species, was brought to the island during the 1970s and 1980s. These other species included the brown teal, takahe, red-crowned parakeet, whitehead, North Island robin and the fernbird.

Native Birds

    Several of the island's birds are New Zealand natives but they do migrate or surface in other areas such as Australia and the Solomon Islands. Fantails are common on the island and the mainland, as well as in Australia. Other native species include the shining cuckoo, kingfisher, morepork, pipit, pukeko, silvereye and the spotless crake. All species are common in New Zealand and live on Tiritiri Matanga.

Introduced Birds

    The island is home to 17 species of bird introduced to the area from elsewhere. One such bird, the blackbird, is common throughout New Zealand and the island and is a native of Europe. The song thrush, skylark, house sparrow and goldfinch are also transplanted European species. Other species have either been transplanted or naturally spread to the island from southeast Asia and Australia. Some of these include the Australian magpie, spotted dove, eastern rosella and the common myna.

Shore Birds

    The beaches and shorelines of the island offer good habitat for 27 species of shorebirds. The white-faced heron, an Australian native, has found its way to the island. Other shore birds, such as the oyster catcher, reef heron and shore plover, feed on the islands beaches. Sea birds such as the Australian gannet, red-billed gull and little shag feed in the coastal waters around Tiritiri Matanga. Some Arctic birds--the Arctic skua, for example--also have made their way onto the island.

About Wild Bird Eggs

About Wild Bird Eggs

Without the eggs of wild birds, it's tough to imagine the world being the same place. Sometimes they are hidden so well or are such an integral part of the landscape that not much thought is given to these natural wonders. But they're also proof that amazing things come in small, unassuming packages.

Function

    Wild bird eggs are the birds' way of reproducing. In spite of a wide variety of shapes and colors, the eggs are designed to provide the most camouflage possible, helping to protect the eggs and nest from predators. The layers of the egg are maximized to keep the unborn bird at the correct temperature.
    Wild bird eggs have also been a food source for humans for thousands of years.

Features

    The developing baby bird is protected by a number of layers of the egg. The outermost layer is the eggshell, the part of the egg that has the distinctive and identifiable colors. In addition, the eggshell is porous, allowing air to reach the developing baby.
    The next layers are an inner and outer membrane that surround the liquid that the bird rests in, called the albumen. The albumen, made of protein and water, provides nutrition to the developing bird. The egg yolk is about 33 percent of the weight of the egg and contains most of the egg's fat content. The yolk--which surrounds the seed of the egg that develops into the bird--provides most of the nutritional protein content. The egg yolk also contains antibodies that help protect the bird from disease and illness after it hatches.

History

    Eggs have been a popular food source since approximately 6000 B.C., when it is thought that eggs were first made a regular part of the menu in China. In the time of ancient Egypt, ancient tomb paintings dating to around1420 B.C. show drawings of bird eggs being offered in homage to the Egyptian gods. Eggs retained their popularity through the Roman empire, when most meals began with a course of eggs. Eggs were, however, banned during Lent in the Middle Ages.
    With the advent of refrigeration, the use of eggs as food was changed forever. While today most eggs come from domesticated chickens, throughout history the eggs of countless species of birds have been used for food, including ostriches and ducks. During the Anglo-Saxon era, people went to great lengths to get the eggs of the guillemot, scaling high, sheer cliffs and risking the rage of protective guillemot parents.

Types

    There is a wide variety of shapes and sizes of bird eggs. Despite all of the features they have in common, it's possible to identify the type of bird the nests belong to by looking at the eggs.
    Guillemot eggs are unique in that they are conical, to help ensure that the eggs don't roll off their precarious nests. The speckled pattern of guillemot eggs are all unique; it's thought that this is so the mother bird can recognize her own eggs in the crowded nesting areas.
    The eggs of the western bluebird are a pale blue, about the size of a dime. There are a few eggs that are perfectly round. These are the eggs of an owl or a woodpecker.

Size

    The smallest egg belongs to the bee hummingbird. As an adult, the bee hummingbird is only about 2 inches long. The nests that the bee hummingbird builds is only an inch wide, and each egg laid weighs only about 1/2 g.
    The ostrich, in addition to being the world's largest bird, is also responsible for laying the world's largest egg. Ostriches in a single community will all lay their eggs in a communal nest, which can contain up to 60 eggs. Each egg weighs about 3 pounds.