Mynah’s make fascinating pets and are the best mimics in the world of birds. Categorized amongst the softbills, these playful birds require special care, especially when it comes to diet. It is also important to note that they are very active birds and require a lot of space. If you think a mynah is the bird for you, then read on.
It is important that you obtain your mynah bird from a reputable domestic mynah breeder, so as to avoid supporting wildlife smugglers, who are responsible for the deaths of vast numbers of birds captured in the wild. Because mynahs can, and should, only be obtained through domestic breeders, it may be a challenge to obtain one; however, there are a number of online resources that will assist you in locating a good breeder.
The most popular pet mynah species are the Greater Indian Hill mynah and the Java Hill mynah. Java Hill mynah’s are the larger of the two and are notable for having a clearer, more human-like voice. On the other-hand Greater Indian Hill mynahs are known to be easier to handle. Mynah’s do well on their own, but a pair is also acceptable. They tend to make more noise when there are two, and do better in an outdoor aviary.
It is advisable to house your mynah in a large cage with a few perches made of natural branches, as they do not climb but only fly and hop. A cage with a grated floor is best as it allows for easy cleaning of the newspaper lined catch tray. A shelf and a nest box will make your mynah feel right at home. The mynah’s cage should be put in a busy part of the home as they are gregarious and enjoy company. Avoid drafty spots and direct sunlight. Include a bathing dish in the cage, along with a water bottle or dish. Be sure to keep both sources of water clean. Supply your very active bird with toys such as mirrors, bells, swings, bottle caps, paper and so forth. Be careful of rope toys as these may catch the tongue of your mynah.
Mynah’s require a specialized diet as hemochromatosis is common. This is a disease that causes too much iron to collect in the bird’s liver, resulting in the bird being poisoned. As such, the mynah must be fed a low iron diet, preferably softbill food that has been formulated to meet their needs. Avoid things such as parrot food, red meat, acidic fruits, seeds and live foods. Recommended fruits to accompany the pelleted diet include apple, banana, melon and grapes, with the seeds removed. Keep the food dishes clean and the cage free of uneaten food items that may spoil. You may wish to give your mynah distilled water if you are concerned about the iron content in your water.
While there are number of considerations to take into account before bringing a pet mynah into your home, if you do decide to do so you will find it a truly rewarding experience.
Preparation for showing and displaying of birds typically begins about four months before the date of the show. At this time you should decide which birds you are going to be showing and then place each bird in its own cage to prevent damage to feathers and so on. The birds chosen for showing and displaying should have good plumage, posture and have all their toes. Examine the birds daily to see if they are still in tip-top condition. Maintain show birds on a nutritious diet that will not allow them to become overweight.
Once you have chosen the birds for showing and displaying, begin a routine of bathing or spraying the birds with water daily. Closer to the date of the show clip claws and file beaks. Keep the cages thoroughly clean so that the bird does not soil its feathers. Begin spraying them with a soft mist of water as their showing condition improves. Two days prior to the show stop this spraying and allow natural oils to coat the birds’ feathers giving them a lovely sheen.
Prepare your birds for the show by familiarizing them with their show cages. This can be done by enticing them into the cage by means of treats. By using this method it will not be necessary to handle your show bird and there will be no risk of damage to feathers or injuries. Also get the bird accustomed to the cage being moved around and lots of noise as this is what they will encounter at the show.
On the day of the show make sure that your show cage is clean and sprinkle a layer of plain seed on the bottom of the cage. Also rather use a water bottle attached to the outside of the cage, You do not want food and water dishes obscuring the view of the judges whilst your bird is on display.
When you arrive you will have to register your birds. The stewards will ensure that you have the correct labels for the group you are entering into. Such labels should be properly displayed. The judges will be looking for shape, size, color and condition of the bird. Plumage is to be fully developed. Birds must look lively and active but not nervous. Once the judges have seen all the birds, prizes are awarded.
Showing and displaying birds can be a rewarding and satisfying experience. Even if you do not win, you will have enjoyed the association of like-minded people, swopping stories and learning from one anothers experiences.
Bird nutrition is vital for your pet bird to remain happy and healthy. A balanced diet will ensure that your bird will live a long healthy life and be able to cope with mental and physical stress. An unbalanced diet will lead to poor health, and perhaps even death.
Of importance is the fact that seed alone will not provide sufficient nutrition for seed-eating birds, even if a variety of seed is offered. To supply your bird with all the necessary vitamins and minerals, include pellets, fruit and vegetables as part of its diet. Formulated diets consist of seeds, grains, vegetables, fruits and proteins. Fresh fruit and vegetables must be washed and remnants left in the cage must be thrown away before it begins to rot.
Non-seed eating birds are fed on a formula which is served either dry or moistened. Formulas which are made into nectar must be changed several times a day. Offer the bird fruit such as: apple, pineapple, figs, pomegranates, grapes and kiwi. Fresh corn on the cob and flowers such as pansies, roses, marigolds and dandelions may also interest them.
Vitamin and mineral supplements are available should such be necessary for the good health of your bird. Buy the product that will specifically meet the nutritional needs of your bird. Vitamin A deficiencies commonly affect birds. You should feed the bird orange vegetables, green leafy vegetables and egg yolk to overcome this nutrient deficiency. Mineral supplements are important for nutrition, especially for breeding birds. Minerals are found in: mineral blocks, cuttlebone, bones/ bone meal, milk and cheese. To provide the necessary protein consider feeding your bird, in moderation: meat, milk, fish and egg.
Certain foods will be detrimental to the health of your bird. Avoid such foods as: those that contain large amounts of fat and sugar, avocado, chocolate, alcohol, caffeine and fruit pits.
Also important to remember in caring for your bird’s nutritional needs is water. Fresh water must be given daily or more frequently if your bird fouls up the water.
avian nutrition is important if you wish to keep your bird in good health, bright and full of life. Thus you can take pleasure in owning and caring for your bird.
Today, more is known about caring for pet birds than in previous years, and good nutritious foods and products are available on the market to ensure the health and well-being of birds kept in captivity. There are natural ways to take care of birds and an increasing number of bird owners are looking to herbs, not only as a treat and to offer a little change in diet but also to enhance the health of their pets.
Sufficient exposure to natural sunlight and sufficient sleep in a dark environment, are both vital to the physical and emotional health of your pet bird. If other more obvious causes have been ruled out by an avian veterinarian, an ill-tempered or sickly bird may very well be suffering from a lack of sunlight and/or a lack of sleep.