Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Clean Lofts - The Key To Racing PIGEON Success

English: Looking northeast from Clifton Avenue...
Looking northeast from Clifton Avenue at rooftop racing pigeon loft (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Keeping clean lofts can be one of the most important parts of successful racing pigeons. Often overlooked and time-consuming, good husbandry comes down to cleanliness. For your birds to be in top form, they need to be the picture of health. The added bonus is that while you are keeping those lofts clean, you can keep a good eye on your birds, seeing who is in top form, and when.

First and most obvious, clean up that poop! Bird poop is a breeding ground for parasites and bacteria. The lofts should be cleaned daily. This is one of the best ways to keep your birds healthy and in racing form. Moving about the loft while cleaning gets your birds to use to you, this is a good time inspect birds. In addition, cleaning poop out of the lofts daily means you will see if something strange is going on. Does somebody's poop look different than usual?

Next, clean those water dishes. Don't just top them off or dump and refill. This is another good place for bacteria and parasites. It is important to rinse them daily, and if you're really strict about cleanliness in your loft you'll wash them with soap and water every day. At a minimum, water dishes should be washed once a week. Remember to thoroughly rinse the dishes after you've had soap in them. Don't just keep refilling those yucky water dishes, clean them. Your bird's form depends upon it.

Finally, wash the food dishes! Even though they are dry and don't appear to get dirty as often as water dishes might, they still need regular cleaning. Once weekly is a good rule of thumb for cleaning food dishes. Again you should make sure to wash them completely with soap and water. Allow the dishes to dry thoroughly before you add more food.

Good racing pigeons start with good husbandry. Good husbandry starts with cleanliness. Keeping the lofts clean is the most important thing you can do to ensure your birds are in top racing form. Nobody wants to race a sick bird and tax its weak body further. The three most important things you can do to keep your lofts clean is clean up the poop and wash dirty food and water dishes often. The added benefit of daily cleaning is that you get to spend time observing your birds. Observing your birds means you will get to know each individually and learn when they are race ready.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Buying a PET BIRD - Things to Think About

Buying a pet bird may sound like something nice and easy but just because they are small and usually kept in a cage, birds are not all alike and not always the most congenial pet imaginable. Well, canaries, finches, parakeets and cockatiels are fairly easy to get along with. So are lovebirds. Canaries and finches are relatively low maintenance. So are parakeets and cockatiels and these are more people friendly and will actually enjoy being touched and petted.

Some people will talk about how low maintenance pet birds are. Birds don't need to be taken for walks and they don't keep you awake at night. You can even create nighttime for birds by covering their cages with a blanket or heavy sheet. For those who say they prefer a warm and cuddly pet, bird lovers are quick to respond that a pet bird can be very affectionate. Some even express happiness at seeing you return home with big noisy greetings.

There are some serious considerations to having a bird as a pet that you don't run into with other pets. One of the big concerns is the need to keep your pet from escaping. If they do manage to fly free, they can be long gone from your neighborhood in a very short time. It doesn't take much for a bird to escape. If you let it out of its cage so it can get a little exercise in the house and have some cuddle time with you, all it takes is someone coming to the door. Even if you just open the door a little, the bird can be out and away in seconds.

Another surprising fact about having pet birds is the lengthy commitment involved. The typical small birds such as canaries, budgies, and finches have a lifespan of at least 15 years. Cockatiels and lovebirds last a minimum of 20 years. Parrots are long life birds. Conures have a lifespan of about 30 years. Some have a 50-year lifespan. African Greys can live up to 75 years. Macaws can last a century.

As a rule of thumb, the bigger your pet bird, the more work is involved. Larger pet birds live longer, need more room, and need more attention. You cannot ignore a bored bird. It can create quite a commotion if it is unhappy with you. Before you make the commitment based on a whim, do some research on buying a pet bird. You will need to know the likes and dislikes of the bird, what kind of food it likes, how much space it needs, what its temperament is like and whether it likes to be touched or not.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Tips For Building An AVIARY

English: Aviary, The Abbey Gardens An exotic b...
Aviary, The Abbey Gardens An exotic bird in the aviary in The Abbey Gardens
(Photo credit: 
Once you have decided on what kind of birds you wish to keep or breed the next thing is to decide on is a flight cage or aviary. Building an aviary requires a certain amount of planning in order to provide a healthy environment for your pets, so it is worthwhile to spend some time doing a bit of research in order to find the right plans for what you need.

Where you are going to place the aviary is another important factor to consider. Are you going to house your birds indoors or outdoors? Do you have enough space for access and cleaning? Will your aviary be in a safe place where you can control damage or potential theft? Once you have thought about these points, the next thing to do is check your buildings plans and decide on what materials you are going to use.

Choosing a sheltered spot for your aviary will keep it protected from the wind and prevent too much direct heat from the sun. Make sure too that it is not too near overhanging branches from trees, as dropping from other birds may contaminate your aviary. Allow for space around the aviary in case you decide you want to extend it at a later date. Better to think ahead than have to reconstruct a whole new aviary which will be time-consuming as well as costly.

Building an aviary of good quality will not only enable you to get the most enjoyment from your pets but also create a more natural environment for the birds themselves.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Caring Suggestions And How To Keep Your RACING PIGEONS Healthy

English: at cage. Bangladesh.
At Cage. Bangladesh.
(Photo credit: 
How can you be the envy of most fanciers in your circuit? Simple; just care for the best racing pigeons and send them to compete. This is easier said than done, but with the right formula at your disposal then it's easy to take the lead in the circuit. It all starts with selecting the best racing pigeons to breed. There are many schools of thoughts that are propagated right now on how to carefully select the best breed.  Though the suggestions are varied, it all boils down to the birds' ability, the feather and its confirmation.  

In bird selection, you can never go wrong with the ones that have a lineage- racing pigeons that come from that illustrious family of race winners. If you don't know someone that breeds these top quality birds, then the second option for you is to go downtown and check out the lofts that breed these birds. One tip to follow is to ask the assistance of someone who knows a thing or two about these birds so that the right ones can be picked. Once the right racing pigeons have been selected, then you have hurdled one stumbling block in becoming the leading fancier in your community.

Now select the best means you are compelled to ensure that they are well-attended to. This means that raising and maintaining these birds and their lofts should be prioritized. There are a number of suggestions on how you can make this happen in your own lofts. And it's best that you are guided by these when raising your birds.

• Overcrowding the loft is not the best strategy. According to many fanciers, every pigeon should be allotted with at least 1 ½ square feet of space. This means that the space of the lofts will be dependent on the number of birds.

• Supply the birds with the right amount of food. But it doesn't mean that you will have to over-feed these animals.

• Take care of the health of the birds by subjecting them to regular checkups. There are certain vaccination shots that should be enjoyed by these birds including shots for pox and paratyphoid.

• It may be best if you can worm these birds at least twice a year.

• If your budget is more than okay, it is best as well to get vitamins and supplements for the birds. Ask the neighborhood vet for the right vitamins for racing birds. A corollary to this, don't just randomly select vitamins which you think are best but are not.

• And did you know that a piece of garlic can do wonders for the health of your birds? There are some fanciers that attest to the workings of garlic. They say that the consumption of this food item helps the rejuvenation of the blood.

Care is not just done prior to racing. Right after racing, racing pigeons deserve some care and affection as well. Give them enough time to rest and recuperate- after all, they have been involved in a very rigorous activity!

Friday, November 16, 2018

The AMAZON PARROT and How They Are Amazing

Red-crowned Amazonian Parrot (Amazona viridigenalis)
Photo   by warriorwoman531 
I am going to introduce you to my Red-Lored Amazon Parrot, Gonzo. He is the mildest in temperament for an Amazon Parrot. He loves to be around people maybe not very cuddly, but his personality outshines that. He is very intelligent and it attentive when being spoken to. He understands you and responds to you when he is told not to do something. He is much like a dog and very loyal. I am very fortunate to have an Amazon-like Gonzo.

Now we are going to talk of the genus of all Amazon parrots. There are about 30 different species within the Amazon genus. They are all on the CITES index, which means that Amazon parrots, like Macaws, Pionus, Caique parrots all protected exportation out of the wilds like Brazil, Central and South America and the likes of Mexico.

On what is called the CITES Treaty; CITES stands for Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna. The CITES also known as the Washington Convention was created by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. It was adopted in 1963, the convention then opened for signatures in 1973 and entered into force on July 1, 1985.

I ask that if you do decide on an Amazon parrot be very careful as to where you purchase your Amazon from. They are an endangered species and they need to be protected by people, like you and I. That is why I highly recommend getting a hand-fed baby or adopting an older parrot. The difference between a wild caught and a domestic parrot is the band they have on their leg; an open band means they have been taken out their country of origin and a closed band means they were hatched and hand-fed in the country you reside in. Many breeders do band their babies for statistical reasons, by keeping clean bloodlines and knowing which aviary the baby came from. If a breeder does not band their babies I would be wary of that purchase. Remember that if one-day certain species of Amazon's may become extinct in the wild, it will be you and I who not let them be forgotten; as they will be our domestic companions.

An Amazon parrot's lifespan, with them being healthy is around 50 years or even longer as long as they have had good nutrition and have been well-taken care with their needs in mind. They are a medium size bird about 10-20 inches from head to toe. Amazon parrots have short stubby tails. Their primary colors are green feathers with coloring on their head and/or their face. Some can be very colorful to just a multitude of greens.

An Amazon parrot's diet, you have to be careful as they have a tendency to become overweight with lack of exercise from being in a cage for a number of hours a day. They eat seed, pellets, fruits, veggies and some may like human food. I highly recommend putting a pellet in their diet. It has nutrients not found in the seed. Fresh fruits and veggies are very important as they contain phytonutrients (antioxidant pigments), that is not found in seed and pellets. Your Amazon needs nutritional food and also a variety of other foods because as they become bored, they need a variety for psychological enrichment. Food is mealtime but it is also playtime. Like your two-year-old child, mealtime is a fun time. The fruits and veggies that are rich in vitamin A are dark green leaf-veggies, carrots (the baby ones whole), mangos and sweet potatoes. The reason for vitamin-enriched foods is because Amazon's are prone to this deficiency. All sorts of fruits and veggies can be fed. The fruits you can feed them are apples, pears, berries, mango, papaya, banana, grapes, oranges, tangerines, tangelos. The veggies you could feed them are whole baby carrots (something they can play with), cucumbers, zucchini, red peppers and chilies, even dandelion and chickweed (make sure they are not sprayed with pesticides). Gonzo loves all nuts, though Amazons are known to get obese from fatty food, he also has an indulgence for tortilla chips and ramen noodles. DO NOT feed them avocado as it is toxic to them. Make sure they have clean and fresh water every day. Amazon's like to dunk their food so you may have to change it a couple of times a day. That is to avoid any bacterial infections.

Their bird cage should be as followed with the cage guidelines when you are buying a cage for them. Remember twice the width so they may spread their wings and 1 1/2 times in length for their tail. Bar spacing needs to be 5/8 inch to one inch apart. There need to be both horizontal and vertical bars to climb around on. The cage Gonzo has is 24x20x27.

They need plenty of toys to play with. Make sure the bowls are secured to the cage because Amazons are renowned throwers. I recommend an extra bowl for treats, fruits and veggies; besides their water and food bowls.

You need to wash their food and water bowls daily. Clean their cage at least once a week, by washing everything down with water and a small amount of dish detergent. Make sure it is well rinsed off when you put your parrot back into the cage after cleaning. Their trays can become quite messy as everything goes on the floor or below them. They do not have the best table manners. I like to change their trays with a newspaper every time I feed them. The newspaper is nontoxic and cheap to get. I do not recommend pine sawdust or ground shells. There is a chance of getting a bacterial infection or them eating it and getting sick.

We have spoken of bacterial infections and you are wondering "How do I know if my parrot is not feeling well?" The signs can be different so watch them carefully. Watch your parrot carefully because parrots differ from one another when there are signs of illness. If their demeanor changes from lively to sullen, ruffled plumage, resting often with their head tucked into their back (keep in mind that your parrot may prefer to sleep this way), consistent sneezing (yes parrots do sneeze). Now the most noticeable ones to watch for are if they do sneeze and discharge is coming from their nostrils, cloudy eyes and any change in their droppings (feces). I recommend you to have a good avian vet specialist, who you have a relationship with; that knows your parrot so you may call them after hours for any potential issues that should arise.

Gonzo is not caged and we do not have to be subjected to the aggression that Amazons are known for. The more your parrot is out and interacting with the family they are more likely to be friendlier and not so aggressive. Amazon's can be the most aggressive of all parrot species; however, this varies from Amazon to Amazon. Our Red-Lored is one of the mildest and more adaptable to the family life than other known species. These issues can be alleviated by not caging your parrot for excessive periods of time. Gonzo is not caged; he hangs on top of his cage and playpen, watching the day goes by. This also gives him a chance for exercise and prevents the obesity Amazons are known for. Please do not keep them on their perch in the middle of their cage; as they will appear like a stuffed parrot and when approached will bring out their aggressive side.

How your Amazon parrot behaves. Many are very loyal, like a dog. Extremely intelligent and playful; you can teach them to play basketball and roller-skate; these are typical toys that can be purchased. They are outstanding talkers and yes, even sing opera. Amazon parrots love classical and traditional anthem music. Keep in mind that each species of parrots are individualistic and have differences so you may get an Amazon parrot who does not sing or talk. In our case, our Red-Lored does not sing nor talk, but is fantastic just the way he is. Never get a parrot expecting it to talk, get it because you want a lifelong companion. Amazon parrots are great screamers and vocalization, not as loud as a cockatoo or macaw though. They can be quite noisy at times, especially when the sun comes up and goes down. When it is breeding season and they hit puberty, about 5 or 6 though it could be later, they can turn into Jekyll and Hyde. Ride it out, this your companion you made, it is a commitment to for life.

Amazon parrot loves to bathe with a mister or in the shower, it is a fun time and it can be quite comical. Their world is about playing. May it be with food to the toys in their cage; they see the world as an adventure playground.

Keeping this all in mind; you will have a happy family when you understand your new found companion and their idiosyncrasies. Gonzo is everything that one that anyone could ever ask for. He is beautiful, great disposition in life and shows us how to take one day at a time. We are grateful for Gonzo; hopefully, after you have done all your research and made that commitment as to what kind of parrot you decided on, you have decided on an Amazon parrot.

    Peter has four very proud parrot species from all over the world. We have lived with our four parrots for over 15 years. All of our parrots are domestically born. The joy we share with them is immeasurable.
    Article Source: EzineArticles