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Spotlight on the Loveable Java Sparrow

by Marnie Bii September 9th, 2014| Birds, Spotlight
java-sparrow-231228_640The Java Sparrow is a challenging, yet extremely rewarding pet bird. If you obtain one as a fledgling, you can eventually tame him or her. This type of bird takes a lot of know-how and patience to win over. Once you understand the process, you can breed generations of tame Javas without issue. The first step in owning a Java involves finding a domestic breeder, as imports have been banned due to the threat to rice cultivation from these birds.

Housing

Your Javas will need a generously sized cage due to their large size and preference for living with
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Cleaning a Cage for Bird Health

by James Maynard August 26th, 2014| Birds, Care
yellowbirdCleaning a bird cage is one of the most important things a companion to a feathered animal can do to keep her avian friend healthy.

Birds are clean animals, quickly and effectively removing dirt, debris and waste from their feathers. Some avians spend up to one-third of their waking hours preening themselves and other birds in their group. Water birds also protect their feathers from the moisture through this cleaning. However, their cage is another story, becoming the responsibility of their human partners.

Ammonia is released anytime bird poop is cleaned from a cage. This gas is dangerous for both humans
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Introducing A Black-Headed Caique To Your Family

by Marnie Bii August 14th, 2014| Birds, Spotlight
black_headed_caiqueIf you want to add an intelligent, charming pet to your family, go to your local breeder and check out the black-headed caique. This smart bird will fill the hole in your family with fun times and sweet bonding moments. At nine inches tall, these caiques are substantial but still easy to house. Keep reading to learn about their personality, housing requirements, diet needs and health expectations.

Personality

The first thing you'll notice about the black-headed caique is their love for a good time. These playful birds perform silly antics that quickly pull at your heartstrings. Owners report their caiques enjoy
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Ouch! What to Do When Your Pet Bird Bites

by Donella Crigger July 29th, 2014| Birds, Care
file000263224390One thing that new bird owners quickly realize is that birds bite. They bite a lot, actually, particularly if the behavior is reinforced. I know what you’re thinking, “I don’t reinforce biting! I punish my pet when he bites!” Punishment may actually do more harm than good when it comes to teaching your bird positive behaviors. To find out why your bird bites and what you should do about it, keep reading.

Beaking versus Biting

What most owners experience is not true biting. Birds often “beak” objects, such as perches and toys (and, yes, fingers) to test their firmness
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How to Help Your Pet Bird Beat the Heat

by Donella Crigger July 1st, 2014| Birds, Care
parrot-344975_640Humans aren’t the only ones that need to beat the heat in the summer. Our feathered friends need to be kept cool, too. A bird’s body temperature is significantly higher than ours, ranging from 104-108 degrees Fahrenheit. Even those that originate from tropical habitats can still suffer from heat-related illnesses and injuries. Remember, wild birds can seek cooler locations in the shade, bathe themselves and take other measures to cool down. Caged birds need their owners to help them stay cool.

Birds lose heat to their environments in two ways. The first way occurs when the environment
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Why Did My Single Pet Bird Lay an Egg?  

by Donella Crigger June 3rd, 2014| Birds, Care
broodingIt can be quite a shock to a bird owner when a single female bird lays an egg. What causes single birds to lay eggs? Will the egg be fertile? Does laying these eggs mean that your bird has a health problem? Find out the answers to these questions below!

What Causes a Single Bird to Lay an Egg?

Just like birds in the wild, your pet bird has breeding hormones. In the wild, these hormones are only activated during certain times of the year when breeding conditions are favorable. In captivity, birds experience favorable conditions year round. This
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Collared Aracari: Inviting a Toucan into Your Life

by Marnie Bii May 20th, 2014| Birds, Spotlight
toucan-214714_640Only consider adding a Collared Aracari to your life if you are ready for a big challenge. Although these toucans are beautiful and fun to watch, their needs will dominate your life. However, if you have the time, money, space and energy, caring for these birds is a highly rewarding pastime.

Take a look at their endearing characteristics, care needs and cage requirements before making a final decision.

Appearance

The first thing you will notice about these birds is their impressive black, yellow and red bill. Half of the Aracaris' 16-inch length consists of their bill alone.  Despite their bills'
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Bird Weight Loss or Gain: A Sign of Illness

by Donella Crigger May 6th, 2014| Birds, Care
animals-314868_640Like many animals, weight is a sign of a bird’s good or poor health. Monitoring your pet bird’s weight is an important aspect of its care. Changes in weight are one of the first warning signs of illness. Although weight loss or weight gain are not good signs, with regular weight checks, you can reduce the risk of more serious health problems by catching illnesses at the onset.

Here are some tips about weighing your pet bird as well as helpful information regarding weight loss and weight gain. For a list of average weights for common pet birds,
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Bird Spotlight: Ducks

by Bea April 22nd, 2014| Birds, Spotlight
The Kids are checking out the ducklingMany of us know the story of the Ugly Duckling. Or, perhaps you know the book Make Way for Ducklings. There's even a statue of it in the Boston Public Garden.  In fact, this is the official children's book of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Needless to say, ducks are often a part of our childhood lives; whether it's through a story, or through feeding them at a pond.

Ducks belong to the Anatidae family of birds. This family includes swans and geese as well. There are a lot of different types of ducks, but all are mostly aquatic
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6 Tips for Feeding Your Bird a Nutritional Diet

by Donella Crigger April 8th, 2014| Birds, Care
bird n handWhile each bird species has its own nutritional needs, there are basic guidelines that bird owners should follow. If your bird has specific dietary needs due to health problems, consult with your veterinarian first before making any changes to the diet.

Color and Variety

Fruits and vegetables are good for you, and they’re good for your bird, too. In fact, your bird should have a serving of fruits or vegetables twice a day. Bird-safe fruits and veggies include melons, pears, bananas, leafy greens, corn, and squash. Be careful with your food choices because some fruits and vegetables
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Penguins as Pets, or Not

by Bea March 27th, 2014| Birds, Spotlight
penguin crossingHere's the thing. Penguins don't have to live at the North or South Pole in order to survive. There are some penguins out there that can happily live in mild temperatures and could be, theoretically, kept as pets. However, just because there are some penguins that could be kept as pets, that doesn't mean that you should have one as a pet. In fact, you should also remember that penguins are an endangered species, so it's illegal to sell penguins. If you buy one, buy it at your own risk. The penalties for being caught with a
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How to Give Your Bird Medicine

by Donella Crigger March 11th, 2014| Birds, Care
bird in handGiving any pet medication is a challenge, but this is especially true with birds. Not only do you have to worry about preventing them from flying away, but those sharp beaks and bird feet are no picnic to deal with, either. As a compromise, some bird owners try to give the bird its medication in the water rather than orally, but this is ineffective. When the medicine is put in the water, you have no control over how much (or how little) your bird will actually get. Medications can change the taste of water, causing your bird
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All health and medical information is provided for educational purposes and is not meant to replace the medical advice or treatment of your animal's veterinarian.